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Living with the Trilemma Constraint: Relative Trilemma Policy Divergence, Crises, and Output Losses for Developing Countries

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  • Joshua Aizenman
  • Hiro Ito

Abstract

This paper investigates the potential impacts of the degree of divergence in open macroeconomic policies in the context of the trilemma hypothesis. Using an index that measures the relative policy divergence among the three trilemma policy choices, namely monetary independence, exchange rate stability, and financial openness, we find that emerging market countries have adopted trilemma policy combinations with the least degree of relative policy divergence in the last fifteen years. We also find that a developing or emerging market country with a higher degree of relative policy divergence is more likely to experience a currency or debt crisis. However, a developing or emerging market country with a higher degree of relative policy divergence tends to experience smaller output losses when it experiences a currency or banking crisis. Latin American crisis countries tended to reduce their financial integration in the aftermath of a crisis, while this is not the case for the Asian crisis countries. The Asian crisis countries tended to reduce the degree of relative policy divergence in the aftermath of the crisis, probably aiming at macroeconomic policies that are less prone to crises. The degree of relative policy divergence is affected by past crisis experiences - countries that experienced currency crisis or a currency-banking twin crisis tend to adopt a policy combination with a smaller degree of policy divergence.

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  • Joshua Aizenman & Hiro Ito, 2013. "Living with the Trilemma Constraint: Relative Trilemma Policy Divergence, Crises, and Output Losses for Developing Countries," NBER Working Papers 19448, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:19448
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    Cited by:

    1. repec:eee:jimfin:v:74:y:2017:i:c:p:258-282 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Lee, Chien-Chiang & Lin, Chun-Wei & Zeng, Jhih-Hong, 2016. "Financial liberalization, insurance market, and the likelihood of financial crises," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 62(C), pages 25-51.
    3. Jean-Pierre Allegret & Audrey Sallenave, 2015. "The role of international reserves holding in buffering external shocks," Working Papers hal-01660235, HAL.
    4. Joshua Aizenman & Menzie D. Chinn & Hiro Ito, 2017. "Financial Spillovers and Macroprudential Policies," NBER Working Papers 24105, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Ito, Hiro & Kawai, Masahiro, 2014. "Determinants of the Trilemma Policy Combination," ADBI Working Papers 456, Asian Development Bank Institute.
    6. Aizenman, Joshua & Cheung, Yin-Wong & Ito, Hiro, 2015. "International reserves before and after the global crisis: Is there no end to hoarding?," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 52(C), pages 102-126.
    7. repec:spr:weltar:v:154:y:2018:i:1:d:10.1007_s10290-017-0302-4 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. ITO Hiroyuki & Cesar RODRIGUEZ, 2015. "Clamoring for Greenbacks: Explaining the resurgence of the U.S. dollar in international debt," Discussion papers 15119, Research Institute of Economy, Trade and Industry (RIETI).
    9. Aizenman, Joshua & Chinn, Menzie D. & Ito, Hiro, 2016. "Monetary policy spillovers and the trilemma in the new normal: Periphery country sensitivity to core country conditions," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 68(C), pages 298-330.
    10. Andrea Fracasso, 2015. "Economic Rebalancing and Growth: the Japanese experience and China’s prospects," DEM Discussion Papers 2015/07, Department of Economics and Management.
    11. Rosaria Canale, 2015. "Capital flows, long term bond yields and fiscal stance: the Eurozone policy trilemma," Portuguese Economic Journal, Springer;Instituto Superior de Economia e Gestao, vol. 14(1), pages 31-44, December.
    12. Qian, Xingwang & Steiner, Andreas, 2017. "International reserves and the maturity of external debt," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 73(PB), pages 399-418.
    13. Ito, Hiro & Chinn, Menzie, 2014. "The Rise of the “Redback” and the People’s Republic of China’s Capital Account Liberalization: An Empirical Analysis of the Determinants of Invoicing Currencies," ADBI Working Papers 473, Asian Development Bank Institute.
    14. Rodriguez, Cesar M., 2017. "The growth effects of financial openness and exchange rates," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 492-512.
    15. Aizenman, Joshua & Ito, Hiro, 2014. "Living with the trilemma constraint: Relative trilemma policy divergence, crises, and output losses for developing countries," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 49(PA), pages 28-51.
    16. Ábel, István, 2015. "A monetáris politika globális tendenciái és a stabilitási kockázatok
      [Financial stability concerns and global exposure of monetary policy]
      ," Közgazdasági Szemle (Economic Review - monthly of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences), Közgazdasági Szemle Alapítvány (Economic Review Foundation), vol. 0(3), pages 284-304.
    17. Xingwang Qian & Andreas Steiner, 2016. "International Reserves, External Debt Maturity, and the Reinforcement Effect for Financial Stability," ifo Working Paper Series 211, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich.
    18. Aizenman, Joshua & Chinn, Menzie D. & Ito, Hiro, 2017. "Balance sheet effects on monetary and financial spillovers: The East Asian crisis plus 20," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 74(C), pages 258-282.
    19. repec:bla:intfin:v:20:y:2017:i:2:p:135-154 is not listed on IDEAS
    20. Samuel Ligonnière, 2017. "Trilemma, Dilemma and Global Players," Working Papers 2017-15, CEPII research center.

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    JEL classification:

    • F31 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Foreign Exchange
    • F36 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Financial Aspects of Economic Integration
    • F41 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - Open Economy Macroeconomics
    • O24 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Development Planning and Policy - - - Trade Policy; Factor Movement; Foreign Exchange Policy

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