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Monetary Unions, External Shocks and Economic Performance

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Abstract

During the last few years there has been a renewed analysis in currency unions as a form of monetary arrangement. This new interest has been largely triggered by the Euro experience. Scholars and policy makers have asked about the optimal number of currencies in the world economy. They have analyzed whether different countries satisfy the traditional “optimal currency area” criteria. These include: (a) the synchronization of the business cycle; (b) the degree of factor mobility; and (c) the extent of trade and financial integration. In this paper I analyze the desirability of a monetary union from a Latin American perspective. First, I review the existing literature on the subject. Second, I use a large data set to analyze the evidence on economic performance in currency union countries. I investigate these countries’ performance on four dimensions: (a) whether countries without a national currency have a lower occurrence of “sudden stop” episodes; (b) whether they have a lower occurrence of “current account reversal” episodes; (c) what is their ability to absorb international terms of trade shocks; and (d) what is their ability to absorb “sudden stops” and “current account reversals” shocks. I find that belonging to a currency union does not lower the probability of facing a sudden stop or a current account reversal. I also find that external shocks are amplified in currency union countries. The degree of amplification is particularly large when compared to flexible exchange rate countries.

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  • Sebastian Edwards, 2006. "Monetary Unions, External Shocks and Economic Performance," Working Papers 126, Oesterreichische Nationalbank (Austrian Central Bank).
  • Handle: RePEc:onb:oenbwp:126
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    1. Tamim Bayoumi, 1994. "A Formal Model of Optimum Currency Areas," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 41(4), pages 537-554, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. John Williamson, 2006. "A worldwide system of reference rates," International Economics and Economic Policy, Springer, vol. 3(3), pages 341-352, December.
    2. Agénor, Pierre-Richard & Aizenman, Joshua, 2011. "Capital market imperfections and the theory of optimum currency areas," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 30(8), pages 1659-1675.
    3. Tavlas, George & Dellas, Harris & Stockman, Alan C., 2008. "The classification and performance of alternative exchange-rate systems," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 52(6), pages 941-963, August.
    4. Stephen McKnight & Marco Robles Sánchez, 2014. "Is a monetary union feasible for Latin America? Evidence from real effective exchange rates and interest rate pass-through levels," Estudios Económicos, El Colegio de México, Centro de Estudios Económicos, vol. 29(2), pages 225-262.
    5. Levan Efremidze & Samuel M. Schreyer & Ozan Sula, 2011. "Sudden stops and currency crises," Journal of Financial Economic Policy, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 3(4), pages 304-321, November.
    6. Cohen, Joseph N., 2008. "Managing the Faustian bargain: monetary autonomy in the pursuit of development in Eastern Europe and Latin America," MPRA Paper 22435, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. Suliman Zakaria S. Abdalla, 2014. "The Impact of Oil Price Fluctuations on the Sudanese Stock Market Performance," Working Papers 887, Economic Research Forum, revised Dec 2014.
    8. Aida Caldera Sánchez & Morten Rasmussen & Oliver Röhn, 2016. "Economic Resilience: What Role for Policies?," Journal of International Commerce, Economics and Policy (JICEP), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 7(02), pages 1-44, June.
    9. José M. Campa & Ángel Gavilán, 2006. "Current accounts in the euro area: An intertemporal approach," Working Papers 0638, Banco de España;Working Papers Homepage.
    10. Jean-Pierre Allegret & Alain Sand-Zantman, 2009. "Does a Monetary Union protect again shocks? An assessment of Latin American integration," Post-Print halshs-00371069, HAL.
    11. Barbara Pfeffer, 2008. "Do regional Trade and Specialization drive intra-regional Risk-Sharing?," MAGKS Papers on Economics 200813, Philipps-Universität Marburg, Faculty of Business Administration and Economics, Department of Economics (Volkswirtschaftliche Abteilung).
    12. Jean-Pierre Allegret & Alain Sand-Zantman, 2006. "Disentangling business cycles and macroeconomic policy in Mercosur: a VAR and unobserved components model approaches," Post-Print halshs-00134317, HAL.
    13. Céline Gimet, 2007. "Le projet d'Union Monétaire dans le Mercosur :Etude de la position actuelle dans les pays par rapport à une carte de critères de soutenabilité," Brussels Economic Review, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles, vol. 50(2), pages 249-273.
    14. Katrin Elborgh-Woytek & Julian Berengaut, 2006. "Beauty Queens and Wallflowers; Currency Unions in the Middle East and Central Asia," IMF Working Papers 06/226, International Monetary Fund.
    15. Juan Carlos Cuestas & Carlyn Dobson, 2011. "Inflation persistence: Implication for a monetary union in the Caribbean," Working Papers 2011017, The University of Sheffield, Department of Economics.
    16. Omotor, Douglason G. & Niringiye, Aggrey, 2011. "Optimum Currency Area and Shock Asymmetry: A Dynamic Analysis of the West African Monetary Zone (WAMZ)," Journal for Economic Forecasting, Institute for Economic Forecasting, vol. 0(3), pages 71-82, September.
    17. Garcia Rocabado, Daniel, 2010. "The road to monetary union in Latin America: An EMS-type fixed exchange rate system as an intermediate step," W.E.P. - Würzburg Economic Papers 85, University of Würzburg, Chair for Monetary Policy and International Economics.

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