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.
After the large exchange rate depreciations following the 1997 East Asian crisis, export volumes from East Asian countries responded with a notable lag. Two main explanations for this lag have been proposed: that the policy of high interest rates limited access to domestic credit and hence limited the supply of exports; and that 'competitive depreciation' neutralized the effects on demand for exports. This paper considers the plausibility of these two mechanisms using a new monthly database on exports of selected industries. We find evidence that 'competitive depreciation' did play a fundamental role in the propagation of the East Asian crisis through the trade channel, even at a monthly frequency.