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Alina Iancu, Gareth Anderson, Mr. Sakai Ando, Ethan Boswell, Mr. Andrea Gamba, Shushanik Hakobyan, Ms. Lusine Lusinyan, Mr. Neil Meads, and Mr. Yiqun Wu
Despite major structural shifts in the international monetary system over the past six decades, the US dollar remains the dominant international reserve currency. Using a newly compiled database of individual economies’ reserve holdings by currency, this departmental paper finds that financial links have been an increasingly important driver of reserve currency configurations since the global financial crisis, particularly for emerging market and developing economies. The paper also finds a rise in inertial effects, implying that the US dollar dominance is likely to endure. But historical precedents of sudden changes suggest that new developments, such as the emergence of digital currencies and new payments ecosystems, could accelerate the transition to a new landscape of reserve currencies.
Mr. Benedict J. Clements, Mr. Zenon Kontolemis, and Mr. Joaquim Vieira Ferreira Levy
This study identifies differences in the monetary policy transmission mechanism across the countries in the euro area. It is argued that part of the differences in the response of economic activity to monetary policy during the pre-EMU period, found in other studies, reflected differences in monetary policy reaction functions, rather than different transmission mechanisms. In light of this, the paper constructs an empirical model on the basis of common reaction functions. The results confirm that even when a common monetary policy is implemented, its effects on economic activity are likely to differ across EMU countries. The paper also constructs an aggregate measure of the effect of monetary policy on prices and output. Finally, the paper examines the relative strength of the credit, exchange rate, and interest rate channels of monetary transmission in EMU countries.
Mr. Luca A Ricci
This paper investigates the circumstances under which it is beneficial to participate in a currency area. A two-country monetary model of trade with nominal rigidities encompasses the real and monetary arguments suggested by the optimum currency area literature: correlation of real shocks, international factor mobility, fiscal adjustment, openness, difference in national inflationary biases, correlation of monetary shocks, and benefits of a single currency. The effect of openness on the net benefits is ambiguous, contrary to the usual argument that more open economies are better candidates for a currency area. Countries do not necessarily agree on whether a given currency union should be created.