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 reviews recent theoretical and empirical developments in the analysis of informal currency markets in developing countries. The basic characteristics of these markets are highlighted, and alternative analytical models to explain them are discussed. The implications for exchange rate policy —including imposition of foreign exchange restrictions, devaluation, and unification of exchange markets— in countries with a sizable parallel market are also examined.