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Does Foreign Exchange Intervention Matter? Disentangling the Portfolio and Expectations Effects

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  • Kathryn M. Dominguez and Jeffrey A. Frankel.

Abstract

The time is ripe for a re-examination of the question whether foreign exchange intervention can affect the exchange rate. We attempt to isolate two distinct effects: the portfolio effect, whereby an increase in the supply of marks must reduce the dollar/mark rate (for given expected rates of return) and the additional expectations effect, whereby intervention that is publicly known may alter investors' expectations of the future exchange rate, which will feed back to the current equilibrium price. We estimate a system consisting of two equations, one describing investors' portfolio behavior and the other their formation of expectations, where the two endogenous variables are the current spot rate and investors' expectation of the future spot rate. We use new data sources: actual daily data on intervention by the Fed, the Bundesbank, and the Swiss National Bank, newspaper stories on exchange rate policy announcements and known intervention, and survey data on investors' expectations. We find evidence of both an expectations effect and a portfolio effect. The statistical significance of the portfolio effect suggests that even sterilized intervention may have had positive effects during the sample period. For the magnitude of the effects to be large requires that intervention be publicly known.
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Suggested Citation

  • Kathryn M. Dominguez and Jeffrey A. Frankel., 1992. "Does Foreign Exchange Intervention Matter? Disentangling the Portfolio and Expectations Effects," Center for International and Development Economics Research (CIDER) Working Papers C92-001, University of California at Berkeley.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucb:calbcd:c92-001
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Frankel, Jeffrey A & Froot, Kenneth A, 1987. "Using Survey Data to Test Standard Propositions Regarding Exchange Rate Expectations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(1), pages 133-153, March.
    2. Golub, Stephen S., 1989. "Foreign-currency government debt, asset markets, and balance of payments," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 8(2), pages 285-294, June.
    3. Pentti J. K. Kouri & Jorge Braga De Macedo, 1978. "Exchange Rates and the International Adjustments Process," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 9(1), pages 111-158.
    4. Giovannini, Alberto & Jorion, Philippe, 1989. " The Time Variation of Risk and Return in the Foreign Exchange and Stock Markets," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 44(2), pages 307-325, June.
    5. Frankel, Jeffrey A., 1982. "In search of the exchange risk premium: A six-currency test assuming mean-variance optimization," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 255-274, January.
    6. Engel, Charles & Rodrigues, Anthony P, 1989. "Tests of International CAPM with Time-Varying Covariances," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 4(2), pages 119-138, April-Jun.
    7. Dominguez, Kathryn Mary, 1990. "Market responses to coordinated central bank intervention," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 121-163, January.
    8. Branson, William H. & Halttunen, Hannu & Masson, Paul, 1977. "Exchange rates in the short run: The dollar-dentschemark rate," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 10(3), pages 303-324.
    9. Dominguez, Kathryn M., 1986. "Are foreign exchange forecasts rational? : New evidence from survey data," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 277-281.
    10. Loopesko, Bonnie E., 1984. "Relationships among exchange rates, intervention, and interest rates: An empirical investigation," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 3(3), pages 257-277, December.
    11. Adler, Michael & Dumas, Bernard, 1983. " International Portfolio Choice and Corporation Finance: A Synthesis," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 38(3), pages 925-984, June.
    12. Pentti J.K. Kouri & Jorge B. de Macedo, 1978. "Exchange Rates and the International Adjustment Process," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 488, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
    13. Jeffrey A. Frankel, 1985. "The Dazzling Dollar," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 16(1), pages 199-217.
    14. Rogoff, Kenneth, 1984. "On the effects of sterilized intervention : An analysis of weekly data," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 133-150, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. Anna Schwartz, 2000. "The Rise and Fall of Foreign Exchange Market Intervention as a Policy Tool," Journal of Financial Services Research, Springer;Western Finance Association, vol. 18(2), pages 319-339, December.
    2. Richard N. Cooper & Jane Sneddon Little, 2001. "U.S. monetary policy in an integrating world: 1960 to 2000," New England Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, pages 33-56.
    3. Kim Kyung Soo, 2000. "Foreign Exchange Intervention For Internal Balance," International Economic Journal, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 14(4), pages 59-75.
    4. Richard T. Baillie & Owen F. Humpage, 1992. "Post-Louvre intervention: did target zones stabilize the dollar?," Working Paper 9203, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
    5. Michael Bordo & Anna Schwartz, 1991. "What has foreign exchange market intervention since the Plaza Agreement accomplished?," Open Economies Review, Springer, vol. 2(1), pages 39-64, February.
    6. Kisukyabo Simwaka & Leslie Kwacha Mkandawire, 2004. "The Efficacy of Foreign Exchange Market Intervention in Malawi," Macroeconomics 0407022, EconWPA.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F31 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Foreign Exchange
    • F33 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - International Monetary Arrangements and Institutions

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