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Can Parameter Instability Explain the Meese-Rogoff Puzzle?

  • Philippe Bacchetta
  • Eric van Wincoop
  • Toni Beutler

The empirical literature on nominal exchange rates shows that the current exchange rate is often a better predictor of future exchange rates than a linear combination of macroeconomic fundamentals. This result is behind the famous Meese-Rogoff puzzle. In this paper we evaluate whether parameter instability can account for this puzzle. We consider a theoretical reduced-form relationship between the exchange rate and fundamentals in which parameters are either constant or time varying. We calibrate the model to data for exchange rates and fundamentals and conduct the exact same Meese-Rogoff exercise with data generated by the model. Our main finding is that the impact of time-varying parameters on the prediction performance is either very small or goes in the wrong direction. To help interpret the findings, we derive theoretical results on the impact of time-varying parameters on the out-of-sample forecasting performance of the model. We conclude that it is not time-varying parameters, but rather small sample estimation bias, that explains the Meese-Rogoff puzzle.

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Paper provided by Université de Lausanne, Faculté des HEC, DEEP in its series Cahiers de Recherches Economiques du Département d'Econométrie et d'Economie politique (DEEP) with number 09.08.

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Length: 34 pages + figures
Date of creation: Jul 2009
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in NBER International Seminar on Macroeonomics 2009, 2010, pp. 125-173
Handle: RePEc:lau:crdeep:09.08
Contact details of provider: Postal: Université de Lausanne, Faculté des HEC, DEEP, Internef, CH-1015 Lausanne
Phone: ++41 21 692.33.20
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  1. Chen, Yu-chin & Rogoff, Kenneth & Rossi, Barbara, 2008. "Can Exchange Rates Forecast Commodity Prices?," Working Papers 08-03, Duke University, Department of Economics.
  2. Eric van Wincoop & Philippe Bacchetta, 2003. "Can Information Heterogeneity Explain the Exchange Rate Determination Puzzle?," NBER Working Papers 9498, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Cheung, Yin-Wong & Chinn, Menzie & Garcia Pascual, Antonio, 2003. "Empirical Exchange Rate Models of the Nineties: Are Any Fit to Survive?," Santa Cruz Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt5fc508pt, Department of Economics, UC Santa Cruz.
  4. Carriero, Andrea & Kapetanios, George & Marcellino, Massimiliano, 2008. "Forecasting Exchange Rates with a Large Bayesian VAR," CEPR Discussion Papers 7008, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Ron Alquist & Menzie D. Chinn, 2008. "Conventional and unconventional approaches to exchange rate modelling and assessment," International Journal of Finance & Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 13(1), pages 2-13.
  6. Richard Meese & Kenneth Rogoff, 1983. "The Out-of-Sample Failure of Empirical Exchange Rate Models: Sampling Error or Misspecification?," NBER Chapters, in: Exchange Rates and International Macroeconomics, pages 67-112 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Barbara Rossi, 2005. "Are Exchange Rates Really Random Walks? Some Evidence Robust to Parameter Instability," International Finance 0503006, EconWPA.
  8. Cheung, Yin-Wong & Chinn, Menzie David, 2001. "Currency traders and exchange rate dynamics: a survey of the US market," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 20(4), pages 439-471, August.
  9. Bacchetta, Philippe & van Wincoop, Eric, 2013. "On the unstable relationship between exchange rates and macroeconomic fundamentals," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(1), pages 18-26.
  10. Kenneth S. Rogoff & Vania Stavrakeva, 2008. "The Continuing Puzzle of Short Horizon Exchange Rate Forecasting," NBER Working Papers 14071, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Valerie Cerra & Sweta Chaman Saxena, 2008. "The Monetary Model Strikes Back: Evidence from the World," IMF Working Papers 08/73, International Monetary Fund.
  12. Meese, Richard A. & Rogoff, Kenneth, 1983. "Empirical exchange rate models of the seventies : Do they fit out of sample?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(1-2), pages 3-24, February.
  13. Wolff, Christian C P, 1987. "Time-Varying Parameters and the Out-of-Sample Forecasting Performance of Structural Exchange Rate Models," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 5(1), pages 87-97, January.
  14. Engel, Charles & West, Kenneth D., 2003. "Exchange rates and fundamentals," Working Paper Series 0248, European Central Bank.
  15. Groen, Jan J J, 2005. "Exchange Rate Predictability and Monetary Fundamentals in a Small Multi-country Panel," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 37(3), pages 495-516, June.
  16. Sarno, Lucio & Valente, Giorgio, 2008. "Exchange Rates and Fundamentals: Footloose or Evolving Relationship?," CEPR Discussion Papers 6638, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  17. Schinasi, Garry J. & Swamy, P. A. V. B., 1989. "The out-of-sample forecasting performance of exchange rate models when coefficients are allowed to change," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 375-390, September.
  18. Nelson Mark & Donggyu Sul, 1998. "Norminal Exchange Rates and Monetary Fundamentals: Evidence from a Small Post-Bretton Woods Panel," Working Papers 98-19, Ohio State University, Department of Economics.
  19. J.J.J. Groen, 2001. "(EURO) Exchange Rate Predictability and Monetary Fundamentals in a Small Multi-Country Panel," WO Research Memoranda (discontinued) 664, Netherlands Central Bank, Research Department.
  20. Philippe Bacchetta & Eric van Wincoop, 2009. "Tacit On the Unstable Relationship between Exchange Rates and Macroeconomic Fundamentals," Cahiers de Recherches Economiques du Département d'Econométrie et d'Economie politique (DEEP) 09.07, Université de Lausanne, Faculté des HEC, DEEP.
  21. Clark, Todd E. & West, Kenneth D., 2006. "Using out-of-sample mean squared prediction errors to test the martingale difference hypothesis," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 135(1-2), pages 155-186.
  22. Molodtsova, Tanya & Papell, David H., 2009. "Out-of-sample exchange rate predictability with Taylor rule fundamentals," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 77(2), pages 167-180, April.
  23. Chen, Yu-chin & Rogoff, Kenneth, 2003. "Commodity currencies," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(1), pages 133-160, May.
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