Exchange Rate Shocks and Firm Competitiveness in a Small, Export-Oriented Economy: The Case of Finland
47 Pages Posted: 18 Jun 2015
Date Written: June 17, 2015
This study empirically examines how exchange rate shocks affect firms’ competitiveness in the small, export-oriented country of Finland. Specifically, using Sweden as a benchmark and controlling for cross-country sector and industry effects, the Forex competition hypothesis is tested using the impact of exchange rate shocks on Finnish stock returns. The empirical tests reveal statistically significant exchange rate exposure of Finnish stock returns. Comparing pre- versus post-euro periods, equities’ exchange rate exposure is much stronger after the introduction of the euro. Further results indicate that Finnish and Swedish sector and industry stock returns positively co-move. This implies market integration in contradiction to the Forex competition hypothesis. However, for some sectors and industries interaction variables reveal that the co-movement is conditional on exchange rate movements, especially in the post-euro period.
Keywords: exchange rate exposure; stock returns; cross-country industry competition; market integration; pre- and post-euro
JEL Classification: F15, F31, F36, G10, G11, G15
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