nep-ifn New Economics Papers
on International Finance
Issue of 2015‒11‒01
three papers chosen by
Vimal Balasubramaniam
University of Oxford

  1. Are Capital Inflows Expansionary or Contractionary? Theory, Policy Implications, and Some Evidence By Blanchard, Olivier; Chamon, Marcos; Ghosh, Atish; Ostry, Jonathan D
  2. Stock returns over the FOMC cycle By Annette Vissing-Jorgensen; Adair Morse; Anna Cieslak
  3. Dynamics of Exchange Rates and Capital Flows By Matteo Maggiori; Xavier Gabaix

  1. By: Blanchard, Olivier; Chamon, Marcos; Ghosh, Atish; Ostry, Jonathan D
    Abstract: The workhorse open-economy macro model suggests that capital inflows are contractionary because they appreciate the currency and reduce net exports. Emerging market policy makers however believe that inflows lead to credit booms and rising output, and the evidence appears to go their way. To reconcile theory and reality, we extend the set of assets included in the Mundell-Fleming model to include both bonds and non-bonds. At a given policy rate, inflows may decrease the rate on non-bonds, reducing the cost of financial intermediation, potentially offsetting the contractionary impact of appreciation. We explore the implications theoretically and empirically, and find support for the key predictions in the data.
    Keywords: capital controls; capital inflows; foreign exchange intervention
    JEL: F21 F23
    Date: 2015–10
  2. By: Annette Vissing-Jorgensen (University of California at Berkeley); Adair Morse (University of California at Berkeley); Anna Cieslak (Northwestern University)
    Abstract: We document that since 1994 the US equity premium follows an alternating weekly pattern measured in FOMC cycle time, i.e. in time since the last Federal Open Market Committee meeting. The equity premium is earned entirely in weeks 0, 2, 4 and 6 in FOMC cycle time (with week 0 starting the day before a scheduled FOMC announcement day). We show that this pattern is likely to reflect a risk premium for news (about monetary policy or the macro economy) coming from the Federal Reserve: (1) The FOMC calendar is quite irregular and changes across sub-periods over which our finding is robust. (2) Even weeks in FOMC cycle time do not line up with other macro releases. (3) Volatility in the fed funds futures market and the federal funds market (but not to the same extent in other markets) peaks during even weeks in FOMC cycle time. (4) Information processing/decision making within the Fed tends to happen bi-weekly in FOMC cycle time: Before 1994, when changes to the Fed funds target in between meetings were common, they disproportionately took place during even weeks in FOMC cycle time. In addition, after 2001 Board of Governors discount rate meetings (at which the board aggregates policy requests from regional federal reserve banks and receives staff briefings) tend to take place bi-weekly in FOMC cycle time. As for how the information gets from the Federal Reserve to the market, we rule out the Federal Reserve signaling policy via open market operations post-1994. Furthermore, the high return weeks do not systematically line up with official information releases from the Federal Reserve or with the frequency of speeches by Fed officials. We end with a discussion of quiet policy communications and unintended information flows.
    Date: 2015
  3. By: Matteo Maggiori (Harvard University); Xavier Gabaix (Stern School of Business)
    Abstract: We explore the quantitative implications of a framework where exchange rates are directly affected by financiers' risk bearing capacity and capital flows. Capital flows drive exchange rates by altering the balance sheets of financiers that bear the risks resulting from international imbalances in the demand for financial assets. Such alterations to their balance sheets cause financiers to change their required compensation for holding currency risk, thus impacting both the level and volatility of exchange rates. We calibrate the model show that it can account for the variability and correlation not only of financial variables, such as the exchange rate and capital flows, but also real variables, such as exports imports and consumption. The model can account for the "excess volatility" of the exchange rate, Backus and Smith puzzle, the failure of UIP, and the exchange rate disconnect. We also consider how policy interventions (especially interventions in the FX market) can mitigate the excess volatility and increase welfare.
    Date: 2015

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