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Fixed parity of the exchange rate and economic performance in the CFA zone : a comparative study

  • Elbadawi, Ibrahim
  • Majd, Nader
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    The authors compare economic performance in the CFA (franc) zone with the economic performance in similar countries outside the CFA zone in recent years. The results of their model estimates indicate that the competitive position for CFA members was weaker in the second half of the 1980s than in the first half and weaker than in non-CFA countries in terms of output growth as well as the performance of exports, investment, and savings. The exception was domestic inflation: the CFA fared better on that front. Results for a longer-term comparison are somewhat mixed. The CFA zone performed better than the others in exports, domestic savings and investment, and inflation, but failed in the long run to distinguish itself in terms of economic growth. The authors use a modified control group approach to compare changes in macroeconomic indicators in the CFA countries with those in countries elsewhere in sub-Saharan Africa and similar low-income developing countries. They control for initial conditions, changing exogenous internal and world environment, and policy stance. Their approach allows for a formal testing of whether zone membership is a random choice. The implication of randomness is that the CFA zone economies would have performed the same as the rest of sub-Saharan Africa, for example, if there had been no zone. Their results show the assumption of randomness to be valid only for GDP growth and inflation.

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    Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 830.

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    Date of creation: 31 Jan 1992
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    Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:830
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    1. J. A. Hausman, 1976. "Specification Tests in Econometrics," Working papers 185, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
    2. Caballero, R. & Corbo, V., 1988. "Real Exchange Rate Uncertainty And Exports: Multi-Country Empirical Evidence," Discussion Papers 1988_12, Columbia University, Department of Economics.
    3. Heckman, James J, 1979. "Sample Selection Bias as a Specification Error," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(1), pages 153-61, January.
    4. Honohan, Patrick, 1990. "Monetary cooperation in the CFA zone," Policy Research Working Paper Series 389, The World Bank.
    5. Devarajan, Shantayanan & de Melo, Jaime, 1987. "Evaluating participation in African monetary unions: A statistical analysis of the CFA Zones," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 483-496, April.
    6. Guillaumont, Patrick & Guillaumont, Sylviane & Plane, Patrick, 1988. "Participating in African monetary unions: An alternative evaluation," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 16(5), pages 569-576, May.
    7. Serven, Luis & Solimano, Andres, 1992. "Private Investment and Macroeconomic Adjustment: A Survey," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 7(1), pages 95-114, January.
    8. Honohan, Patrick, 1990. "Price and monetary convergence in currency unions : the Franc and Rand zones," Policy Research Working Paper Series 390, The World Bank.
    9. Faini, Riccardo & de Melo, Jaime, 1990. "Adjustment, investment, and the real exchange rate in developing countries," Policy Research Working Paper Series 473, The World Bank.
    10. Chhibber, Ajay, 1991. "Africa's rising inflation : causes, consequences, and cures," Policy Research Working Paper Series 577, The World Bank.
    11. Devarajan, Shantayanan & de Melo, Jaime, 1987. "Adjustment with a Fixed Exchange Rate: Cameroon, Cote d'Ivoire, and Senegal," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 1(3), pages 447-87, May.
    12. Devarajan, Shantayanan & de Melo, Jaime, 1990. "Membership in the CFA zone : Odyssean journey or Trojan horse?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 482, The World Bank.
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