The IMF Working Papers series is designed to make IMF staff research available to a wide audience. Almost 300 Working Papers are released each year, covering a wide range of theoretical and analytical topics, including balance of payments, monetary and fiscal issues, global liquidity, and national and international economic developments.
The paper shows how-in a Merton-type model with bankruptcy-the currency composition of debt changes the risk profile of a company raising a given amount of financing, and thus affects the cost of debt. Foreign currency borrowing is cheaper when the exchange rate is positively correlated with the return on the company's assets, even if the company is not an exporter. Prudential regulations should therefore differentiate among loans depending on the extent to which borrowers have "natural hedges" of their foreign currency exposures.