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When do central banks prefer to intervene secretly?

  • Ferré Carracedo, Montserrat
  • Manzano, Carolina

Central banks often intervene secretly in the foreign exchange market. This secrecy seems to be at odds with the signalling channel. In this article we will analyse when a central bank intervening in the foreign exchange rate market purely through the signalling channel would prefer to act secretly or publicly. By using a microstructure model, we will show that the consistency of the intervention with fundamentals, the volume of noise trading, the weight given to the effectiveness of intervention and the degree of superior information held by the central bank will influence the decision to intervene secretly or publicly. Keywords: foreign exchange intervention, market microstructure. JEL Classifi…cation: D82, E58, F31, G14.

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Paper provided by Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 2072/5317.

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Date of creation: 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:urv:wpaper:2072/5317
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  1. Charles Engel & Kenneth D. West, 2004. "Exchange Rates and Fundamentals," NBER Working Papers 10723, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Dominguez, Kathryn M. E., 2003. "The market microstructure of central bank intervention," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(1), pages 25-45, January.
  3. Vitale, Paolo, 1999. "Sterilised central bank intervention in the foreign exchange market," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(2), pages 245-267, December.
  4. Michel Beine & Oscar Bernal Diaz & Jean-Yves Gnabo & Christelle Lecourt, 2007. "Intervention Policy of the BoJ: a Unified Approach," Working Papers CEB 07-013.RS, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  5. Christopher J. Neely, 2000. "The practice of central bank intervention: looking under the hood," Working Papers 2000-028, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
  6. Christopher J. Neely, 2007. "Central bank authorities’ beliefs about foreign exchange intervention," Working Papers 2006-045, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
  7. Manzano, Carolina, 2002. "The Effect of the Transparency of Order Flows in a Dealer Market with Several Securities," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 11(2), pages 212-227, April.
  8. Leahy, Michael P, 1995. "The profitability of US intervention in the foreign exchange markets," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 14(6), pages 823-844, December.
  9. Bhattacharya, Utpal & Weller, Paul, 1992. "The Advantage to Hiding One's Hand: Speculation and Central Bank Intervention in the Foreign Exchange Market," CEPR Discussion Papers 737, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Michel Beine & Oscar Bernal & Jean-Yves Gnabo & Christelle Lecourt, 2007. "Intervention Policy of the BoJ: a Unified Approach," LSF Research Working Paper Series 07-19, Luxembourg School of Finance, University of Luxembourg.
  11. Beine, Michel & Bernal, Oscar, 2007. "Why do central banks intervene secretly?: Preliminary evidence from the BoJ," Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 291-306, July.
  12. Kyle, Albert S, 1985. "Continuous Auctions and Insider Trading," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 53(6), pages 1315-35, November.
  13. Sarno, Lucio & Taylor, Mark P, 2001. "Official Intervention in the Foreign Exchange Market: Is It Effective, and, If So, How Does It Work?," CEPR Discussion Papers 2690, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  14. Barnett, Richard C. & Ozerturk, Saltuk, 2007. "The advantage of showing your hand selectively in foreign exchange interventions," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 23(1), pages 228-244, March.
  15. Priscilla Chiu, 2003. "Transparency versus constructive ambiguity in foreign exchange intervention," BIS Working Papers 144, Bank for International Settlements.
  16. Owen F. Humpage, 1994. "Institutional aspects of U.S. intervention," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, issue Q I, pages 2-19.
  17. Saacke, Peter, 2002. "Technical analysis and the effectiveness of central bank intervention," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 21(4), pages 459-479, August.
  18. Sjoo, Boo & Sweeney, Richard J., 2001. "The foreign-exchange costs of central bank intervention: evidence from Sweden," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 219-247, April.
  19. Chang, Yuanchen & Taylor, Stephen J., 1998. "Intraday effects of foreign exchange intervention by the Bank of Japan1," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 17(1), pages 191-210, February.
  20. Sweeney, R. J., 2000. "Does the Fed beat the foreign-exchange market?," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 24(5), pages 665-694, May.
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