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Commodity Trade and the Carry Trade: a Tale of Two Countries

Author

Listed:
  • Nikolai Roussanov

    (Wharton School, U. of Penn)

  • Robert Ready

    (University of Rochester)

Abstract

Persistent differences in interest rates across countries account for much of the profitability of currency carry trade strategies. We relate these differences to the differences of economic fundamentals across countries. We show that countries that primarily export basic commodities exhibit systematically high (real) interest rates while countries that specialize in exporting finished consumption goods typically have lower rates. The resulting interest rate differentials do not fully translate into the depreciation of the commodity currencies, on average. Instead, they translate into expected returns that capture the bulk of the unconditional risk premia that can be obtained in the currency markets. We provide a general equilibrium model of commodity trade and currency pricing that can rationalize these facts by relying on adjustment costs in the shipping sector.

Suggested Citation

  • Nikolai Roussanov & Robert Ready, 2012. "Commodity Trade and the Carry Trade: a Tale of Two Countries," 2012 Meeting Papers 817, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  • Handle: RePEc:red:sed012:817
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F31 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Foreign Exchange
    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates
    • G15 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - International Financial Markets

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