The Mundell-Flemming Model: a Quarter Century Later

87 Pages Posted: 16 Jul 2004

See all articles by Jacob A. Frenkel

Jacob A. Frenkel

Merrill Lynch & Co. - Sovereign Advisory Group and Global Financial Institutions Group; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Assaf Razin

Tel Aviv University - Eitan Berglas School of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute); Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Date Written: July 1987

Abstract

The Mundell-Fleming model of international macroeconomics originated in the writings of Robert A. Mundell and J. Marcus Fleming in the early 1960s. The key contribution of the model has been a systematic analysis of the role played by international capital mobility in determining the effectiveness of macroeconomic policies under alternative exchange rate regimes. During the ensuing quarter century, the model was extended in various directions and is still the main "work horse" of traditional open-economy macroeconomics. This paper develops an exposition that integrates the various facets of the model and incorporates its extensions into a unified analytical framework. Attention is given to the distinction between short-run and long-run effects of policies, the implication of debt and tax financing of government expenditures, the role of the exchange rate regime in this regard, and debt revaluation and trade-balance revaluation effects associated with exchange rate changes. The resulting integration clarifies the key economic mechanisms operating in the Mundell-Fleming model and helps to identify its limitations. Among these is the neglect of intertemporal budget constraints and of the consequences of forward- looking behavior consistent with this constraint. The formulation in the paper casts the model in a manner that facilitates comparisons with more modern approaches. In so doing, the exposition provides a bridge between the traditional and the more modern approaches to international macroeconomics.

Suggested Citation

Frenkel, Jacob A. and Razin, Assaf, The Mundell-Flemming Model: a Quarter Century Later (July 1987). NBER Working Paper No. w2321. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=227280

Jacob A. Frenkel (Contact Author)

Merrill Lynch & Co. - Sovereign Advisory Group and Global Financial Institutions Group

New York, NY
United States

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Assaf Razin

Tel Aviv University - Eitan Berglas School of Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 39040
Ramat Aviv, Tel Aviv, 69978
Israel
+972 3 640 7303 (Phone)
+972 3 640 9908 (Fax)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.CESifo.de

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

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