IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Exchange Rates in The 1920's: A Monetary Approach


  • Jacob A. Frenkel
  • Kenneth W. Clements


Current views about flexible exchange rate systems are based, to a large extent, on the lessons from the period of the 1920's during which many exchange rates were flexible. This paper re-examines the evidence from the perspective of the recently revived monetary approach (or more generally, asset-market approach) to the exchange rate. The analysis starts by developing a simple monetary model of exchange rate determination. The key characteristic of the model lies in the notion that, being a relative price of two monies, the equilibrium exchange rate is attained when the existing stocks of the two monies are willingly held. The equilibrium exchange rate is shown to depend on both real and monetary factors which operate through their influence on the relative demands and supplies of monies. The analysis then proceeds to examine the relationship between spot and forward rates for the Franc/Pound, Dollar/Pound and Franc/Dollar exchange rates and the results are shown to be consistent with the efficient market hypothesis. The monetary model is then estimated using monthly data and using the forward premium on foreign exchange as a measure of expectations. In addition to the single-equation ordinary-least-squares estimates, the various exchange rates are also estimated as a system using the mixed-estimation procedure which combines the sample information with prior information which derives from the homogeneity postulate and from known properties of the demand for money. The various results are shown to be consistent with the predictions of the monetary model.

Suggested Citation

  • Jacob A. Frenkel & Kenneth W. Clements, 1978. "Exchange Rates in The 1920's: A Monetary Approach," NBER Working Papers 0290, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:0290
    Note: ITI EFG IFM

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Calvo, Guillermo A & Rodriguez, Carlos Alfredo, 1977. "A Model of Exchange Rate Determination under Currency Substitution and Rational Expectations," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 617-625, June.
    2. Lance Girton & Don E. Roper, 1976. "Theory and implications of currency substitution," International Finance Discussion Papers 86, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    3. Chau-nan Chen, 1973. "Diversified Currency Holdings and Flexible Exchange Rates," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 87(1), pages 96-111.
    4. Kouri, Pentti J K, 1976. " The Exchange Rate and the Balance of Payments in the Short Run and in the Long Run: A Monetary Approach," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 78(2), pages 280-304.
    5. Mussa, Michael, 1974. "A Monetary Approach to Balance-of-Payments Analysis," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 6(3), pages 333-351, August.
    6. Paul R. Milgrom, 1978. "Rational Expectations," Discussion Papers 406, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
    7. Chrystal, K Alec, 1977. "Demand for International Media of Exchange," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 67(5), pages 840-850, December.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:0290. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.