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Government Spending, Monetary Policy, and the Real Exchange Rate

  • Hafedh Bouakez
  • Aurélien Eyquem

A robust prediction across a wide range of open-economy macroeconomic models is that an unanticipated increase in public spending in a given country appreciates it currency in real terms. This result, however, contradicts the findings of a number of recent empirical studies, which instead document a significant and persistent depreciation of the real exchange rate following an expansionary government spending shock. In this paper, we rationalize the findings of the empirical literature by proposing a small-open-economy model that features three key ingredients: incomplete and imperfect international financial markets, sticky prices, and a not-too-aggressive monetary policy. The model predicts that in response to an unexpected increase in public expenditures, the effective long-term real interest rate falls, causing the real exchange rate to depreciate. We establish this result both analytically, within a special version of the model, and numerically for the more general case.

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Paper provided by CIRPEE in its series Cahiers de recherche with number 1212.

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Date of creation: 2012
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Handle: RePEc:lvl:lacicr:1212
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  1. Kim J. Ruhl, 2008. "The International Elasticity Puzzle," Working Papers 08-30, New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business, Department of Economics.
  2. Jordi Galí & Mark Gertler & J. David López-Salido, 2002. "Markups, gaps, and the welfare costs of business fluctuations," Banco de Espa�a Working Papers 0204, Banco de Espa�a.
  3. Enders, Zeno & Müller, Gernot J. & Scholl, Almuth, 2008. "How do fiscal and technology shocks affect real exchange rates? New evidence for the United States," CFS Working Paper Series 2008/22, Center for Financial Studies (CFS).
  4. Merz, Monika, 1995. "Search in the labor market and the real business cycle," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(2), pages 269-300, November.
  5. Hafedh Bouakez & Foued Chihi & Michel Normandin, 2011. "Fiscal Policy and External Adjustment: New Evidence," Cahiers de recherche 1123, CIRPEE.
  6. Hafedh Bouakez & Nooman Rebei, 2007. "Why does private consumption rise after a government spending shock?," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 40(3), pages 954-979, August.
  7. Ravn, Morten O & Schmitt-Grohé, Stephanie & Uribe, Martín, 2007. "Explaining the Effects of Government Spending Shocks on Consumption and the Real Exchange Rate," CEPR Discussion Papers 6541, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Kollmann, Robert, 2009. "Government Purchases and the Real Exchange Rate," CEPR Discussion Papers 7427, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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