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Fluctuations, Bilateral Trade and the Exchange Rate Regime

  • Jean IMBS

In a recent paper, Frankel and Rose (1998) documented endogenous effects of a monetary union, whereby costs and benefits of the union evolve after its implementation. This paper questions their findings on three grounds. First, their main result that trading partners display relatively more synchronized cycles is not robust to the presence of fixed effects, or variables omitted from their estimation liable to generate both intense trade and synchronized cycles. Second, the cost of giving up independent monetary policy is usually evaluated on the basis of the extent of co-fluctuations between business cycles. We bring into focus which measure of the cycle ought to be used for that purpose. In particular, such measure should in our opinion reflect how synchronized cycles would be in the absence of independent monetary policy. Third, documenting the assumption that fixed exchange rate regimes translate into more bilateral trade has proved elusive. We show that using a bilateral rather than cross-country approach brings little improvement on that front.

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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 9906.

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Length: 15 pages
Date of creation: Apr 1998
Date of revision: Nov 1998
Handle: RePEc:lau:crdeep:9906
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. Joseph E. Gagnon, 1989. "Exchange rate variability and the level of international trade," International Finance Discussion Papers 369, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  2. David Backus & Patrick J. Kehoe & Finn E. Kydland, 1992. "Dynamics of the Trade Balance and the Terms of Trade: The S-Curve," NBER Working Papers 4242, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Imbs, Jean M., 1999. "Technology, growth and the business cycle," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(1), pages 65-80, August.
  4. Frankel, Jeffrey & Stein, Ernesto & Wei, Shang-jin, 1995. "Trading blocs and the Americas: The natural, the unnatural, and the super-natural," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(1), pages 61-95, June.
  5. Frankel, Jeffrey A & Rose, Andrew K, 1996. "The Endogeneity of the Optimum Currency Area Criteria," CEPR Discussion Papers 1473, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Canova, Fabio, 1993. "Sources and Propagation of International Business Cycles: Common Shocks or Transmission?," CEPR Discussion Papers 781, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  7. Luca Antonio Ricci, 1998. "Uncertainty, Flexible Exchange Rates, and Agglomeration," IMF Working Papers 98/9, International Monetary Fund.
  8. Bacchetta, Philippe & van Wincoop, Eric, 1998. "Does Exchange Rate Stability Increase Trade and Capital Flows?," CEPR Discussion Papers 1962, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. Andreas Hornstein & Jack Praschnik, 1997. "Intermediate inputs and sectoral comovement in the business cycle," Working Paper 97-06, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond.
  10. Elhanan Helpman & David T. Coe, 1993. "International RandD Spillovers," IMF Working Papers 93/84, International Monetary Fund.
  11. Jean IMBS, 1998. "Co-Fluctuations," Cahiers de Recherches Economiques du Département d'Econométrie et d'Economie politique (DEEP) 9819, Université de Lausanne, Faculté des HEC, DEEP.
  12. Kollmann, Robert, 2001. "Explaining international comovements of output and asset returns: The role of money and nominal rigidities," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 25(10), pages 1547-1583, October.
  13. Frankel, Jeffrey A. & Rose, Andrew K., 1997. "Is EMU more justifiable ex post than ex ante?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 41(3-5), pages 753-760, April.
  14. Agathe Cote, 1994. "Exchange Rate Volatility and Trade," International Trade 9406001, EconWPA, revised 23 Jun 1994.
  15. Artis, Michael J & Zhang, Wenda, 1995. "International Business Cycles and the ERM: Is there a European Business Cycle?," CEPR Discussion Papers 1191, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  16. Jeffrey A. Frankel & David Romer, 1996. "Trade and Growth: An Empirical Investigation," NBER Working Papers 5476, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Canova, Fabio & Dellas, Harris, 1993. "Trade interdependence and the international business cycle," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(1-2), pages 23-47, February.
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