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Purchasing Power Disparity During the Floating Rate Period: Exchange Rate Volatility, Trade Barriers and Other Culprits

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  • Shang-Jin Wei
  • David C. Parsley

Abstract

Using a panel of 12 tradable sectors in 91 OECD country pairs (14 countries), we study the deviations from the purchasing power parity during the recent floating exchange rate period. (1) We find some evidence that the deviations are positively related to exchange rate volatility as well as to transportation costs. (2) Once we have controlled for these two factors, free trade areas such as the EC and the EFTA do not seem to reduce significantly the deviations from PPP relative to other OECD countries. (3) Although only using the post- 1973 data, we are able to find strong evidence of mean reversion towards PPP. The estimated half lives of the deviation from PPP are about four years and three quarters for the non-EMS countries in the sample, and four years and one quarter for the EMS countries. (4) We find evidence of non-linearity in the rate of mean reversion: the convergence occurs faster for country pairs with larger initial deviations.

Suggested Citation

  • Shang-Jin Wei & David C. Parsley, 1995. "Purchasing Power Disparity During the Floating Rate Period: Exchange Rate Volatility, Trade Barriers and Other Culprits," NBER Working Papers 5032, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:5032
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    1. Frankel, Jeffrey A. & Wei, Shang-Jin, 1993. "Emerging Currency Blocs," Center for International and Development Economics Research (CIDER) Working Papers 233209, University of California-Berkeley, Department of Economics.
    2. Engel, Charles & Rogers, John H, 1996. "How Wide Is the Border?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(5), pages 1112-1125, December.
    3. De Gregorio, Jose & Giovannini, Alberto & Wolf, Holger C., 1994. "International evidence on tradables and nontradables inflation," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 38(6), pages 1225-1244, June.
    4. Jeffrey A. Frankel, 1985. "International capital mobility and crowding-out in the U.S. economy: imperfect integration of financial markets or of goods markets?," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, pages 33-74.
    5. Genberg, Hans, 1978. "Purchasing power parity under fixed and flexible exchange rates," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(2), pages 247-276, May.
    6. Jeffrey A. Frankel & Ernesto Stein & Shang-Jin Wei, 1998. "Continental Trading Blocs: Are They Natural or Supernatural?," NBER Chapters,in: The Regionalization of the World Economy, pages 91-120 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Froot, Kenneth A. & Rogoff, Kenneth, 1995. "Perspectives on PPP and long-run real exchange rates," Handbook of International Economics,in: G. M. Grossman & K. Rogoff (ed.), Handbook of International Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 32, pages 1647-1688 Elsevier.
    8. Kenneth A. Froot & Kenneth Rogoff, 1991. "The EMS, the EMU, and the Transition to a Common Currency," NBER Chapters,in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1991, Volume 6, pages 269-328 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Atish R. Ghosh & Holger C. Wolf, 1994. "Pricing in International Markets: Lessons From The Economist," NBER Working Papers 4806, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Kenneth Rogoff, 1992. "Traded Goods Consumption Smoothing and the Random Walk Behavior of the Real Exchange Rate," Monetary and Economic Studies, Institute for Monetary and Economic Studies, Bank of Japan, vol. 10(2), pages 1-29, November.
    11. Bela Balassa, 1964. "The Purchasing-Power Parity Doctrine: A Reappraisal," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 72, pages 584-584.
    12. Lothian, James R & Taylor, Mark P, 1996. "Real Exchange Rate Behavior: The Recent Float from the Perspective of the Past Two Centuries," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(3), pages 488-509, June.
    13. Papell, David H, 1994. "Exchange Rates and Prices: An Empirical Analysis," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 35(2), pages 397-410, May.
    14. Edison, Hali J, 1987. "Purchasing Power Parity in the Long Run: A Test of the Dollar/Pound Exchange Rate (1890-1978)," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 19(3), pages 376-387, August.
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    JEL classification:

    • F21 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Investment; Long-Term Capital Movements

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