A Fundamental Theory of Exchange Rates and Direct Currency Trades
In this paper we construct a two-country search monetary model to determine the nominal exchange rate between two fiat monies. Our model imposes natural restrictions on agents' opportunities for arbitrage. These restrictions bind when the gross growth rates of the two currency stocks exceed the discount factor. In this case the nominal exchange rate is determinate and depends on economic fundamentals of the two countries' economies, including the stocks and growth rates of the two monies. The model generates essential, direct currency-for-currency exchanges, which imply a nominal exchange rate that is different from the relative price between the two currencies in the goods markets. Unless the stocks of the two monies remain constant, there are persistent violations of the law of one price and purchasing power parity in equilibrium despite the fact that prices are perfectly flexible and all goods are tradeable between countries. Nominal and real exchange rates can move together in the steady state in response to money growth shocks.
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