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International Coordination of Economic Policies: Scope, Methods, and Effects

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  • Jacob A. Frenkel
  • Morris Goldstein
  • Paul R. Masson

Abstract

This paper discusses the scope, methods, the effects of international coordination of economic policies. In addressing the scope for and of coordination, the analysis covers the rationale for coordination, barriers to coordination, the range and specificity of policies to be coordinated, the frequency of coordination, and the size of the coordinating group. Turning to the methods of coordination, the emphasis is on the broad issues of rules versus discretion, single-indicator versus multi-indicator approaches, and hegemonic versus more symmetric systems. In an attempt to shed some light on the effects of alternative rule- based proposals for coordination, we present some simulations of a global macroeconomic model (MULTIMQD) developed in the International Monetary Fund. The simulations considered range from 'smoothing rules for monetary and fiscal policy that imply only minimal international coordination, to more activist "target-zone" proposals that place greater restrictions on national authorities in the conduct of monetary and/or fiscal policies. The simulation results are compared to the actual evolution of the world economy over the 1974-87 period. Our findings suggest that simple mechanistic rule-based proposals are unlikely to lead to improved performance.

Suggested Citation

  • Jacob A. Frenkel & Morris Goldstein & Paul R. Masson, 1988. "International Coordination of Economic Policies: Scope, Methods, and Effects," NBER Working Papers 2670, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:2670
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    Cited by:

    1. Jacob A. Frenkel & Morris Goldstein, 1988. "Exchange rate volatility and misalignment: evaluating some proposals for reform," Proceedings - Economic Policy Symposium - Jackson Hole, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, pages 185-231.
    2. Mª del Carmen Díaz Roldán, 1998. "La coordinacion internacional de la politica monetaria en presencia de perturbaciones simetricas: ¿Resulta beneficioso cooperar?," Documentos de Trabajo - Lan Gaiak Departamento de Economía - Universidad Pública de Navarra 9808, Departamento de Economía - Universidad Pública de Navarra.
    3. Bryant, R.C. & Helliwell, J.F. & Hooper, P., 1989. "Domestic And Cross-Border Consequences Of U.S. Macroeconomic Policies," Papers 68, Brookings Institution - Working Papers.
    4. Freedman, Charles, 1990. "La politique monétaire des années 90 : leçons et enjeux," L'Actualité Economique, Société Canadienne de Science Economique, vol. 66(2), pages 147-186, juin.
    5. Peter Mooslechner & Martin Schuerz, 1999. "International Macroeconomic Policy Coordination: Any Lessons for EMU? A Selective Survey of the Literature," Empirica, Springer;Austrian Institute for Economic Research;Austrian Economic Association, vol. 26(3), pages 171-199, September.

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