Stuck on Gold: Real Exchange Rate Volatility and the Rise and Fall of the Gold Standard

32 Pages Posted: 29 Nov 2006  

Natalia Chernyshoff

affiliation not provided to SSRN

David S. Jacks

Simon Fraser University (SFU) - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Alan M. Taylor

University of California, Davis - Department of Economics; University of Virginia - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Date Written: November 2005

Abstract

Did adoption of the gold standard exacerbate or diminish macroeconomic volatility? Supporters thought so, critics thought not, and theory offers ambiguous messages. A hard exchange-rate regime such as the gold standard might limit monetary shocks if it ties the hands of policy makers. But any decision to forsake exchange-rate flexibility might compromise shock absorption in a world of real shocks and nominal stickiness. A simple model shows how a lack of flexibility can be discerned in the transmission of terms of trade shocks. Evidence on the relationship between real exchange rate volatility and terms of trade volatility from the late nineteenth and early twentieth century exposes a dramatic change. The classical gold standard did absorb shocks, but the interwar gold standard did not, and this historical pattern suggests that the interwar gold standard was a poor regime choice.

Suggested Citation

Chernyshoff, Natalia and Jacks, David S. and Taylor, Alan M., Stuck on Gold: Real Exchange Rate Volatility and the Rise and Fall of the Gold Standard (November 2005). NBER Working Paper No. w11795. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=851704

Natalia Chernyshoff

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

No Address Available

David S. Jacks

Simon Fraser University (SFU) - Department of Economics ( email )

8888 University Drive
Burnaby, British Columbia V5A 1S6
Canada

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Alan M. Taylor (Contact Author)

University of California, Davis - Department of Economics ( email )

One Shields Drive
Davis, CA 95616-8578
United States
530-752-1572 (Phone)
530-752-9382 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.econ.ucdavis.edu/faculty/amtaylor/

University of Virginia - Department of Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 400182
Charlottesville, VA 22904-4182
United States
(434)-924-3177 (Phone)
(434)-982-2904 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://people.virginia.edu/~amt7u

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

HOME PAGE: http://nber.org

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

77 Bastwick Street
London, EC1V 3PZ
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://cepr.org

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