IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

The Optimal Currency Area in a Liquidity Trap

  • David Cook
  • Michael B. Devereux

Open economy macro theory says that when a country is subject to idiosyncratic macro shocks, it should have its own currency and a flexible exchange rate. But recently in many countries policy rates have been pushed down close to the lower bound, limiting the ability of policy-makers to accommodate shocks, even in open economies with flexible exchange rates. In this paper, we show that if the zero bound constraint is binding and policy lacks an effective `forward guidance' mechanism, a flexible exchange rate system may be inferior to a single currency area, even when there are country-specific macro shocks. When monetary policy is constrained by the zero bound, under independent currencies with flexible exchange rates, the exchange rate exacerbates the impact of shocks. Remarkably, this may hold true even if only a subset of countries are constrained by the zero bound, and other countries freely adjust their interest rates. In order for a regime of multiple currencies to dominate a single currency area in a liquidity trap environment, it is necessary to have effective forward guidance in monetary policy.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: Access to the full text is generally limited to series subscribers, however if the top level domain of the client browser is in a developing country or transition economy free access is provided. More information about subscriptions and free access is available at Free access is also available to older working papers.

As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 19588.

in new window

Date of creation: Oct 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:19588
Note: IFM
Contact details of provider: Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
Phone: 617-868-3900
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. John Cogan & Tobias Cwik & John Taylor & Volker Wieland, 2009. "New Keynesian Versus Old Keynesian Government Spending Multipliers," Discussion Papers 08-030, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.
  2. Benhabib, J. & Schmitt-Grohe, S. & Uribe, M., 1999. "Avoiding Liquidity Traps," Working Papers 99-21, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  3. Beetsma, Roel & Jensen, Henrik, 2002. "Monetary and Fiscal Policy Interactions in a Micro-Funded Model of a Monetary Union," CEPR Discussion Papers 3591, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Lawrence Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum & Sergio Rebelo, 2011. "When Is the Government Spending Multiplier Large?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 119(1), pages 78 - 121.
  5. Benigno, Gianluca & Benigno, Pierpaolo, 2003. "Designing targeting rules for international monetary policy cooperation," Working Paper Series 0279, European Central Bank.
  6. Faia, Ester & Monacelli, Tommaso, 2006. "Optimal Monetary Policy in a Small Open Economy with Home Bias," CEPR Discussion Papers 5522, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  7. Davig, Troy & Leeper, Eric M., 2009. "Monetary-Fiscal Policy Interactions and Fiscal Stimulus," CEPR Discussion Papers 7509, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Ippei Fujiwara & Nao Sudo & Tomoyuki Nakajima & Yuki Teranishi, 2010. "Global liquidity trap," Globalization and Monetary Policy Institute Working Paper 56, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.
  9. Lars E.O. Svensson, 2003. "Escaping from a Liquidity Trap and Deflation: The Foolproof Way and Others," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 17(4), pages 145-166, Fall.
  10. Martin Bodenstein & Christopher J. Erceg & Luca Guerrieri, 2009. "The effects of foreign shocks when interest rates are at zero," International Finance Discussion Papers 983, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  11. Olivier Blanchard & Roberto Perotti, 2002. "An Empirical Characterization Of The Dynamic Effects Of Changes In Government Spending And Taxes On Output," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 117(4), pages 1329-1368, November.
  12. Roberto Perotti, 2007. "In Search of the Transmission Mechanism of Fiscal Policy," NBER Working Papers 13143, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Paul R. Krugman, 1998. "It's Baaack: Japan's Slump and the Return of the Liquidity Trap," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 29(2), pages 137-206.
  14. R. Anton Braun & Lena Mareen Körber & Yuichiro Waki, 2012. "Some unpleasant properties of log-linearized solutions when the nominal rate is zero," FRB Atlanta Working Paper 2012-05, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
  15. Ippei Fujiwara & Nao Sudo & Yuki Teranishi, 2010. "The Zero Lower Bound and Monetary Policy in a Global Economy: A Simple Analytical Investigation," International Journal of Central Banking, International Journal of Central Banking, vol. 6(1), pages 103-134, March.
  16. Julio J. Rotemberg & Michael Woodford, 1998. "An Optimization-Based Econometric Framework for the Evaluation of Monetary Policy: Expanded Version," NBER Technical Working Papers 0233, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:19588. 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: ()

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 references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link 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 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.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.