The Limited Viability of Dual Exchange-Rate Regimes

48 Pages Posted: 16 Jul 2004 Last revised: 14 Sep 2010

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: April 1986

Abstract

This paper examines the viability of dual exchange-rate regimes. Typically, under such a regime the exchange rates applicable to current-account(commercial) transactions and to capital-account (financial) transactions differ from each other. This difference may be determined in the free market if the authorities peg the commercial exchange rate and set a binding quota on external borrowing, or it may result from direct pegging of both exchange rates. The analysis starts with a specification of the characteristics of the distortion introduced by the exchange-rate premium (that is, the percentage discrepancy between the financial and the commercial exchange rates), and then provides explicit formula for the equilibrium premium, for its evolution over time and for the welfare cost induced by the distortion. The paper outlines the set of policy options consistent with sustaining a permanently viable dual exchange-rate system and highlights the severe constraints that intertemporal solvency requirements of the private sector and of the government impose on the long-run viability of the regime. The paper concludes with an analysis of the monetary changes associated with dual exchange-rate policies and draws the implications of such a regime for the intertemporal distribution of taxes and for the intergenerational distribution of welfare.

Suggested Citation

Frenkel, Jacob A. and Razin, Assaf, The Limited Viability of Dual Exchange-Rate Regimes (April 1986). NBER Working Paper No. w1902. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=344745

Jacob A. Frenkel

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 (Contact Author)

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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