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Current Accounts and Exchange Rates: A New Look at the Evidence

  • Greg Leonard
  • Alan C. Stockman

This paper 'goes back to basics' in empirical analysis of the J-Curve. First, we document strong violations in the distributional assumptions that underlie nearly all previous work on this issue. Second, we employ distribution-free, non-parametric statistical tests to characterize the data and summarize the key relationships between real exchange rates, the current account, and real GDP. We find some (weak) evidence of a J-Curve in the data. Interestingly, however, we document that this evidence is not consistent with the standard theoretical explanation of the J-Curve. Consequently, our empirical results pose a strong challenge for international economic theory.

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File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w8361.pdf
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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 8361.

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Date of creation: Jul 2001
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Publication status: published as Leonard, Greg and Alan C. Stockman. "Current Accounts And Exchange Rates: A New Look At The Evidence," Review of International Economics, 2002, v10(3,Aug), 483-496.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:8361
Note: IFM
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  1. David K. Backus & Patrick J. Kehoe & Finn E. Kydland, 1987. "International real business cycles," Working Papers 426, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  2. Maurice Obstfeld & Alan M. Taylor, 1997. "Nonlinear Aspects of Goods-Market Arbitrage and Adjustment: Heckscher's Commodity Points Revisited," NBER Working Papers 6053, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Michael, Panos & Nobay, A Robert & Peel, David A, 1997. "Transactions Costs and Nonlinear Adjustment in Real Exchange Rates: An Empirical Investigation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(4), pages 862-79, August.
  4. Paul R. Krugman & Richard E. Baldwin, 1987. "The Persistence of the U.S. Trade Deficit," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 18(1), pages 1-56.
  5. David K. Backus & Patrick J. Kehoe & Finn E. Kydland, 1992. "Dynamics of the trade balance and the terms of trade: the S-curve," Working Paper 9211, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
  6. Rose, Andrew K. & Yellen, Janet L., 1989. "Is there a J-curve?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(1), pages 53-68, July.
  7. Paul G. J. O'Connell & Shang-Jin Wei, 1997. ""The Bigger They Are, The Harder They Fall": How Price Differences Across U.S. Cities Are Arbitraged," NBER Working Papers 6089, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Moffett, Michael H., 1989. "The J-curve revisited: an empirical examination for the United States," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 425-444, September.
  9. Betts, Caroline & Devereux, Michael B., 1996. "The exchange rate in a model of pricing-to-market," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(3-5), pages 1007-1021, April.
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