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Identifying the Efficacy of Central Bank Interventions: Evidence from Australia

Author

Listed:
  • Jonathan Kearns

    (Reserve Bank of Australia)

  • Roberto Rigobon

    (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)

Abstract

The endogeneity of exchange rates and intervention has long plagued studies of the effectiveness of central banks’ actions in foreign exchange markets. Researchers have either excluded contemporaneous intervention so that their explanators are predetermined, or obtained a small, and typically incorrectly signed, coefficient on contemporaneous intervention. Failing to account for the endogeneity, when central banks lean against the wind and trade strategically, will likely result in a large downward bias to the coefficient on contemporaneous intervention – explaining the negative coefficient frequently obtained. We use an alternative identification assumption – a change in the intervention policy of the Reserve Bank of Australia – that allows us to estimate, using simulated Generalised Method of Moments (GMM), a model that includes the contemporaneous impact of intervention. There are three main results. Our point estimates suggest that central bank intervention has an economically significant contemporaneous effect. A US$100 million purchase of the domestic currency will appreciate the exchange rate by 1.3 to 1.8 per cent. This estimate is remarkably similar to the calibration conducted by Dominguez and Frankel (1993c), who themselves noted their estimate was larger than previous empirical findings. Secondly, the vast majority of the effect of an intervention on the exchange rate is found to occur during the day in which it is conducted, with only a smaller impact on subsequent days. Finally, we confirm findings that Australian central bank intervention policy can be characterised as leaning against the wind.

Suggested Citation

  • Jonathan Kearns & Roberto Rigobon, 2003. "Identifying the Efficacy of Central Bank Interventions: Evidence from Australia," RBA Research Discussion Papers rdp2003-04, Reserve Bank of Australia.
  • Handle: RePEc:rba:rbardp:rdp2003-04
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Hillebrand, Eric & Schnabl, Gunther & Ulu, Yasemin, 2009. "Japanese foreign exchange intervention and the yen-to-dollar exchange rate: A simultaneous equations approach using realized volatility," Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 490-505, July.
    2. Juan J. Echavarría & Luis F. Melo-Velandia & Mauricio Villamizar-Villegas, 2018. "The impact of pre-announced day-to-day interventions on the Colombian exchange rate," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 55(3), pages 1319-1336, November.
    3. Kathryn M.E. Dominguez & Rasmus Fatum & Pavel Vacek, 2010. "Does Foreign Exchange Reserve Decumulation Lead to Currency Appreciation?," Working Papers 602, Research Seminar in International Economics, University of Michigan.
    4. Michel Beine & Oscar Bernal Diaz, 2005. "Why do Central Banks intervene secretly? preliminary evidence of the BoJ," DULBEA Working Papers in, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
    5. Fratzscher, Marcel, 2006. "On the long-term effectiveness of exchange rate communication and interventions," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 146-167, February.
    6. Oscar Bernal Diaz & Jean-Yves Gnabo, 2007. "Talks, financial operations or both? Generalizing central banks' FX reaction functions," DULBEA Working Papers 07-03.RS, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
    7. Michael Melvin & Lukas Menkhoff & Maik Schmeling, 2008. "Automating Exchange Rate Target Zones: Intervention via an Electronic Limit Order Book," CESifo Working Paper Series 2221, CESifo.
    8. Cheng, Ai-ru (Meg) & Das, Kuntal & Shimatani, Takeshi, 2013. "Central bank intervention and exchange rate volatility: Evidence from Japan using realized volatility," Journal of Asian Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(C), pages 87-98.
    9. Ito, Takatoshi & Yabu, Tomoyoshi, 2007. "What prompts Japan to intervene in the Forex market? A new approach to a reaction function," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 26(2), pages 193-212, March.
    10. Kentaro Iwatsubo & Satoshi Kawanishi, 2011. "The Information Improving Channel of Exchange Rate Intervention: How Do Official Announcements Work?," Discussion Papers 1116, Graduate School of Economics, Kobe University.
    11. Christopher J. Neely, 2011. "A foreign exchange intervention in an era of restraint," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, vol. 93(Sep), pages 303-324.
    12. Oscar Bernal Diaz, 2006. "Do interactions between political authorities and central banks influence FX interventions? Evidence from Japan," DULBEA Working Papers 06-03.RS, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
    13. Charles Engel, 2010. "Exchange rate policies," BIS Papers chapters, in: Bank for International Settlements (ed.), The international financial crisis and policy challenges in Asia and the Pacific, volume 52, pages 229-250, Bank for International Settlements.
    14. Edwards, Sebastian & Rigobon, Roberto, 2009. "Capital controls on inflows, exchange rate volatility and external vulnerability," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 78(2), pages 256-267, July.
    15. Moura, Marcelo L. & Pereira, Fatima R. & Attuy, Guilherme de Moraes, 2013. "Currency Wars in Action: How Foreign Exchange Interventions Work in an Emerging Economy," Insper Working Papers wpe_304, Insper Working Paper, Insper Instituto de Ensino e Pesquisa.
    16. Fratzscher, Marcel, 2009. "How successful is the G7 in managing exchange rates?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(1), pages 78-88, September.
    17. Michel Beine & Paul De Grauwe & Marianna Grimaldi, 2014. "The Impact of FX Central Bank Intervention in a Noise Trading Framework," World Scientific Book Chapters, in: Exchange Rates and Global Financial Policies, chapter 6, pages 189-216, World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    18. Chris Becker & Michael Sinclair, 2004. "Profitability of Reserve Bank Foreign Exchange Operations: Twenty Years After the Float," RBA Research Discussion Papers rdp2004-06, Reserve Bank of Australia.
    19. Wright, Allan S & Craigwell, Roland C & RamjeeSingh, Diaram, 2011. "Exchange rate determination in Jamaica: A market microstructures and macroeconomic fundamentals approach," MPRA Paper 33436, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    20. Douglas, Christopher C. & Kolar, Marek, 2009. "Capturing the time dynamics of central bank intervention," Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, Elsevier, vol. 19(5), pages 950-968, December.
    21. Bernal, Oscar & Gnabo, Jean-Yves, 2009. "Announcements, financial operations or both? Generalizing central banks' FX reaction functions," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 23(4), pages 367-394, December.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    central bank intervention; foreign exchange rate markets; heteroskedasticity; identification;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C15 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Statistical Simulation Methods: General
    • F31 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Foreign Exchange

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