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Fear of Appreciation

  • Levy-Yeyati, Eduardo
  • Sturzenegger, Federico
  • Gluzmann, Pablo

In recent years the term “fear of floating” has been used to describe exchange rate regimes that, while officially flexible, in practice intervene heavily to avoid sudden or large depreciations. However, the data reveals that in most cases (and increasingly so in the 2000s) intervention has been aimed at limiting appreciations rather than depreciations, often motivated by the neomercantilist view of a depreciated real exchange rate as protection for domestic industries. As a first step to address the broader question of whether this view delivers on its promise, we examine whether this “fear of appreciation” has a positive impact on growth performance in developing economies. We show that depreciated exchange rates indeed lead to higher growth, but that the effect, rather than through import substitution or export booms as argued by the mercantilist view, works largely through the deepening of domestic savings and capital accumulation.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 42917.

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Date of creation: Nov 2007
Date of revision: Nov 2012
Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:42917
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  1. Glüzmann, Pablo Alfredo & Levy-Yeyati, Eduardo & Sturzenegger, Federico, 2012. "Exchange rate undervaluation and economic growth: Díaz Alejandro (1965) revisited," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 117(3), pages 666-672.
  2. Reinhart, Carmen & Rogoff, Kenneth, 2004. "The modern history of exchange rate arrangements: A reinterpretation," MPRA Paper 14070, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  3. Lane, Philip R. & Shambaugh, Jay C., 2008. "Financial exchange rates and international currency exposures," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2008,22, Deutsche Bundesbank, Research Centre.
  4. Calvo, Guillermo A. & Izquierdo, Alejandro & Loo-Kung, Rudy, 2006. "Relative price volatility under Sudden Stops: The relevance of balance sheet effects," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(1), pages 231-254, June.
  5. Joshua Aizenman & Jaewoo Lee, 2007. "International Reserves: Precautionary Versus Mercantilist Views, Theory and Evidence," Open Economies Review, Springer, vol. 18(2), pages 191-214, April.
  6. Philippe Aghion & Diego Comin & Peter Howitt, 2006. "When Does Domestic Saving Matter for Economic Growth?," DEGIT Conference Papers c011_030, DEGIT, Dynamics, Economic Growth, and International Trade.
  7. Michael P. Dooley & David Folkerts-Landau & Peter Garber, 2004. "The revived Bretton Woods system," International Journal of Finance & Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 9(4), pages 307-313.
  8. Hausmann, Ricardo & Hwang, Jason & Rodrik, Dani, 2005. "What You Export Matters," Working Paper Series rwp05-063, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
  9. Roberto Chang & Andrés Velasco, 2001. "A Model Of Financial Crises In Emerging Markets," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 116(2), pages 489-517, May.
  10. Eswar S. Prasad & Raghuram G. Rajan & Arvind Subramanian, 2007. "Foreign Capital and Economic Growth," NBER Working Papers 13619, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Raghuram G. Rajan & Arvind Subramanian, 2009. "Aid, Dutch Disease, and Manufacturing Growth," Working Papers 196, Center for Global Development.
  12. Philippe Aghion & Philippe Bacchetta & Abhijit Banerjee, 2001. "A Corporate Balance-Sheet Approach to Currency Crises," Cahiers de Recherches Economiques du Département d'Econométrie et d'Economie politique (DEEP) 01.14, Université de Lausanne, Faculté des HEC, DEEP.
  13. Edwards, Sebastian & Garcia, Márcio G (ed.), 2008. "Financial Markets Volatility and Performance in Emerging Markets," National Bureau of Economic Research Books, University of Chicago Press, edition 0, number 9780226184951.
  14. Blanchard, Olivier J & Milesi-Ferretti, Gian Maria, 2010. "Global Imbalances: In Midstream?," CEPR Discussion Papers 7693, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  15. Augusto de la Torre & Eduardo Levy Yeyati & Sergio L. Schmukler, 2003. "Living and Dying with Hard Pegs: The Rise and Fall of Argentina's Currency Board," JOURNAL OF LACEA ECONOMIA, LACEA - LATIN AMERICAN AND CARIBBEAN ECONOMIC ASSOCIATION.
  16. Rose, Andrew K., 2007. "A stable international monetary system emerges: Inflation targeting is Bretton Woods, reversed," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 26(5), pages 663-681, September.
  17. Jay C. Shambaugh, 2004. "The Effect of Fixed Exchange Rates on Monetary Policy," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 119(1), pages 300-351, February.
  18. Stanley Fischer, 2001. "Exchange Rate Regimes: Is the Bipolar View Correct?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(2), pages 3-24, Spring.
  19. Reinhart, Carmen & Calvo, Guillermo, 2002. "Fear of floating," MPRA Paper 14000, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  20. Maurice Obstfeld & Jay C. Shambaugh & Alan M. Taylor, 2010. "Financial Stability, the Trilemma, and International Reserves," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 2(2), pages 57-94, April.
  21. repec:fip:fedgsq:y:2005:i:mar10 is not listed on IDEAS
  22. VJeffrey A. Frankel, 2005. "Mundell-Fleming Lecture: Contractionary Currency Crashes in Developing Countries," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 52(2), pages 149-192, September.
  23. Roberto Chang & Andres Velasco, 1998. "Financial Crises in Emerging Markets," NBER Working Papers 6606, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  24. Paul Krugman, 1999. "Balance Sheets, the Transfer Problem, and Financial Crises," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 6(4), pages 459-472, November.
  25. Eduardo Levy Yeyati, 2008. "Liquidity Insurance in a Financially Dollarized Economy," NBER Chapters, in: Financial Markets Volatility and Performance in Emerging Markets, pages 185-218 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  26. Eduardo Levy-Yeyati & Federico Sturzenegger, 2003. "To Float or to Fix: Evidence on the Impact of Exchange Rate Regimes on Growth," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(4), pages 1173-1193, September.
  27. Levy-Yeyati, Eduardo & Sturzenegger, Federico, 2005. "Classifying exchange rate regimes: Deeds vs. words," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 49(6), pages 1603-1635, August.
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