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Accumulation of reserves and keeping up with the Joneses: the case of LATAM economies

  • Cheung, Yin-Wong
  • Sengupta, Rajeswari

In this paper we explore the ‘Mrs. Machlup's Wardrobe’ hypothesis to understand the growing trend of Latin American economies amassing large stocks of international reserves. Using annual data from 1980 to 2007, we examine the relevance of the argument that economies continue to add to their existing reserves stock in order to keep up with the Joneses. We find strong evidence of presence of the Joneses effect. The effect is robust to the inclusion of traditional determinants of reserve accumulation as well as region specific factors including commodity exports that set the Latin American economies apart from other emerging economies.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 30426.

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Date of creation: 23 Jul 2010
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in International Review of Economics and Finance 20.2011(2010): pp. 19-31
Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:30426
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  9. Yin-Wong Cheung & Xingwang Qian, 2007. "Hoarding of International Reserves: Mrs Machlup’s Wardrobe and the Joneses," CESifo Working Paper Series 2065, CESifo Group Munich.
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