Giancarlo Corsetti, Gernot Müller, Keith Kuester, 16 September 2017

The classic rationale for flexible exchange rates was that policymakers would be unconstrained by currency targets. The Great Recession, however, saw numerous central banks constrained instead by the zero lower bound. This column considers which exchange rate regime is best for small open economies in a global recession. The model suggests that if the source of the shock is abroad and foreign interest rates become constrained at their zero lower bound, then flexible exchange rates do provide a great deal of insulation to the domestic economy.

Marvin Goodfriend, Eswar Prasad, 22 August 2007

US and EU pressure on China to revalue the renminbi create the mistaken impression that there is an unavoidable conflict of interests. A switch by China to a more flexible exchange rate regime, accompanied by a shift to a new nominal anchor, would serve China’s domestic interests and simultaneously defuse protectionist sentiments abroad. A politically savvy recasting of this issue as one of Chinese monetary-policy independence could help solve many problems.

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