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Pitfalls in Measuring Exchange Rate Misalignment: The Yuan and Other Currencies

  • Yin-Wong Cheung
  • Menzie D. Chinn
  • Eiji Fujii

We evaluate whether the Renminbi (RMB) is misaligned, relying upon conventional statistical methods of inference. A framework built around the relationship between relative price and relative output levels is used. We find that, once sampling uncertainty and serial correlation are accounted for, there is little statistical evidence that the RMB is undervalued, even though the point estimates usually indicate economically significant misalignment. The result is robust to various choices of country samples and sample periods, as well as to the inclusion of control variables. We then update the results using the latest vintage of the data to demonstrate how fragile the results are. We find that whatever misalignment we detected in our previous work disappears in this data set.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 14168.

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Date of creation: Jul 2008
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Publication status: published as Yin-Wong Cheung & Menzie Chinn & Eiji Fujii, 2009. "Pitfalls in Measuring Exchange Rate Misalignment," Open Economies Review, Springer, vol. 20(2), pages 183-206, April.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:14168
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  1. Virginie Coudert & Cécile Couharde, 2005. "Real Equilibrium Exchange Rate in China," Working Papers 2005-01, CEPII research center.
  2. Michael Funke & Jörg Rahn, 2005. "Just how Undervalued is the Chinese Renminbi," Quantitative Macroeconomics Working Papers 20504, Hamburg University, Department of Economics.
  3. Chinn, Menzie D. & Ito, Hiro, 2006. "What matters for financial development? Capital controls, institutions, and interactions," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 81(1), pages 163-192, October.
  4. Fernald, John & Edison, Hali & Loungani, Prakash, 1999. "Was China the first domino? Assessing links between China and other Asian economies," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 18(4), pages 515-535, August.
  5. Yin-wong Cheung & Menzie D. Chinn & Eiji Fujii, 2007. "The Overvaluation of Renminbi Undervaluation," Working Papers 112007, Hong Kong Institute for Monetary Research.
  6. Canzoneri, Matthew B & Cumby, Robert & Diba, Behzad, 1996. "Relative Labour Productivity and the Real Exchange Rate in the Long Run: Evidence for a Panel of OECD Countries," CEPR Discussion Papers 1464, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  7. Eswar Prasad & Shang-Jin Wei, 2007. "The Chinese Approach to Capital Inflows: Patterns and Possible Explanations," NBER Chapters, in: Capital Controls and Capital Flows in Emerging Economies: Policies, Practices and Consequences, pages 421-480 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Menzie David Chinn, 1997. "The usual suspects? productivity and demand shocks and Asia-Pacific real exchange rates," Pacific Basin Working Paper Series 97-06, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  9. Hsieh, David A., 1982. "The determination of the real exchange rate : The productivity approach," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3-4), pages 355-362, May.
  10. T. W.Swan, 1960. "Economic Control In A Dependent Economy," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 36(73), pages 51-66, 03.
  11. Menzie David Chinn & Eswar Prasad, 2000. "Medium-Term Determinants of Current Accounts in Industrial and Developing Countries; An Empirical Exploration," IMF Working Papers 00/46, International Monetary Fund.
  12. Bela Balassa, 1964. "The Purchasing-Power Parity Doctrine: A Reappraisal," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 72, pages 584.
  13. Andrew K. Rose & Saktiandi Supaat & Jacob Braude, 2009. "Fertility and the real exchange rate," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 42(2), pages 496-518, May.
  14. Kenneth Rogoff, 1996. "The Purchasing Power Parity Puzzle," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 34(2), pages 647-668, June.
  15. Xiangming Li & Steven Vincent Dunaway, 2005. "Estimating China's "Equilibrium" Real Exchange Rate," IMF Working Papers 05/202, International Monetary Fund.
  16. MD. Chinn, 2000. "Three measures of East Asian currency evaluation," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 18(2), pages 205-214, 04.
  17. Lamin Leigh & Steven Vincent Dunaway & Xiangming Li, 2006. "How Robust Are Estimates of Equilibrium Real Exchange Rates; The Case of China," IMF Working Papers 06/220, International Monetary Fund.
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