The Euro as a Reserve Currency for Global Investors

40 Pages Posted: 25 May 2010

See all articles by Luis M. Viceira

Luis M. Viceira

Harvard Business School - Finance Unit; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Ricardo Gimeno

Banco de España

Date Written: May 24, 2010

Abstract

In this article, we explore the demand for the euro for risk management purposes, and the evidence of stock market integration in the euro area. We define a reserve currency as one that investors demand either because it helps them hedge real interest risk and inflation risk, or because it helps them reduce the volatility of their portfolio of stocks and bonds because its return is negatively correlated with the returns on those assets. This article re-examines the role of the euro as a reserve currency in the sense of Campbell, Viceira and White (2003), updating their evidence, and reviews the evidence of Campbell, Serfaty-de Medeiros and Viceira (2010) in detail. Consistent with the intuition that an integrated capital market is one in which there is a common discount factor pricing securities, we also investigate whether stocks in the euro area have moved from a regime in which national stock markets were priced with discount rates that were predominantly country specific, to a regime in which national stock markets are predominantly priced by a euro area-wide common discount rate. We adopt the beta decomposition approach of Campbell and Vuolteenaho (2004) and Campbell, Polk and Vuolteenaho (2010) to test for capital market integration, and find robust evidence of increased capital market integration in the euro zone, and consequently improved risk sharing among euro zone economies.

Keywords: Euro, Reserve Currency, Currency hedging, Market Integration, Beta decomposition

JEL Classification: G12, G15, F31, F15, E42

Suggested Citation

Viceira, Luis M. and Gimeno, Ricardo, The Euro as a Reserve Currency for Global Investors (May 24, 2010). Banco de Espana Working Paper No. 1014. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1615345 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1615345

Luis M. Viceira (Contact Author)

Harvard Business School - Finance Unit ( email )

Boston, MA 02163
United States
617-495-6331 (Phone)
617-496-6592 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.people.hbs.edu/lviceira

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Ricardo Gimeno

Banco de España ( email )

Madrid 28014
Spain

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