Foreign Exchange Markets and Exchange Rates

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1 Microconomics Topic 1: Explain why xchang rats indicat th pric of intrnational currncis and how xchang rats ar dtrmind by supply and dmand for currncis in intrnational markts. Rfrnc: Grgory Mankiw s Principls of Macroconomics, 2 nd dition, Chaptr 17 (p , ). Not: This is Mankiw s macro txtbook, not th micro txtbook rfrncd in th othr topics. Forign Exchang Markts and Exchang Rats Whn Amricans buy goods or srvics producd in forign countris, thy normally must first buy th currncis usd in thos forign countris. For xampl, whn an importing firm in Nw York buys Europan br, paymnt to th Europan brwry must b mad in uros, not dollars. imilarly, if a Europan rsidnt wants to vacation in Florida or buy goods from th U.., h or sh must buy dollars. A markt for currncis, known as th forign xchang markt, thus ariss alongsid th world markt for goods and srvics. Howvr, it is not only trad in goods and srvics that gnrats trad in forign xchang. World capital markts also rsult in forign xchang transactions. For xampl, if an Amrican rsidnt wishs to buy stocks, bonds, ral stat, or othr assts in Europ, h or sh must first buy uros. Th pric at which a currncy xchangs for anothr currncy in th forign xchang markt is rfrrd to as an xchang rat. An xchang rat is a rlativ pric of on currncy in trms of anothr. For xampl, in May 22, th pric of a Europan uro in U.. currncy was about $.92. But if th xchang rat of th uro was $.92, this also mant that th xchang rat of th dollar in trms of uros was about 1.9 uros (1/.92 = 1.9). Th dollar pric of th uro is just th rciprocal of th uro pric of th dollar, and vic vrsa. upply and mand for Currncis In ordr to undrstand th following modl of xchang rats, you first nd to undrstand th basic modl of supply and dmand. For mor information, rfr to th nots for Micro Topic 3. Assum that th world consists of two countris, th U.. and Europ. Individuals in ths two countris trad with on anothr in goods and srvics, as wll as in financial assts. Consquntly, a markt for forign xchang ariss, which can b charactrizd in two ways -- as a dmand and supply of dollars, or as a dmand and supply of uros. Bcaus th pric of dollars in trms of uros is just th invrs of th pric of uros in trms of dollars, ths two ways of charactrizing th forign xchang markt ar rally quivalnt. It dosn't mattr whthr w draw supply and dmand curvs for dollars or supply and dmand curvs for uros, as long as w rmmbr how to intrprt th pric in ach cas, and rmmbr that if th dollar pric of uros riss thn, by dfinition, th uro pric of dollars falls, and vic vrsa.

2 Pric of uros in dollars (a) Pric of dollars in uros 1/ (b) 1 A B C' ' 1/ 2 = $.92 1/ = 1.9 uros 2 C 1/ 1 A' B' of uros Figur 8.1 of dollars To illustrat, considr Figur 8.1. In panl (a) w illustrat th markt for uros. On th vrtical axis w masur th xchang rat,, which in this cas is dfind as th pric of uros in trms of dollars (dollars pr uro, or $/ ). On th horizontal axis is th quantity of uros tradd in th forign xchang markt. Th dmand for uros rprsnts th bhavior of Amricans and othrs who wish to buy Europan goods and assts. Th dmand is downward sloping. Why? As th uro wakns against th dollar, i.., as falls, ach dollar buys mor uros, and thrfor th dollar prics of Europan goods and assts fall. This inducs Amricans to buy mor Europan goods and assts, and consquntly incrass th quantity of uros dmandd by Amricans. Th supply curv of uros in Figur 8.1 (a) rprsnts th bhavior of Europans and othrs who wish to buy Amrican goods and assts. Th supply is upward sloping. Why? As th uro strngthns against th dollar, i.., as incrass, ach uro buys mor dollars, so th uro prics of Amrican goods and assts fall. This inducs Europans to buy mor Amrican goods and assts, which mans thy ar supplying a gratr quantity of uros to th forign xchang markt. Th quilibrium xchang rat in Figur 8.1 (a) is, which is $.92. This is th marktclaring xchang rat, whr th quantity of uros dmandd in th forign xchang markt is xactly qual to th quantity of uros supplid. If th actual xchang rat xcdd, for xampl if th xchang rat wr 1 instad, thn thr would b an xcss supply of uros qual to AB. At a pric of 1, mor uros ar offrd for sal than buyrs wish to purchas, and comptition among sllrs will driv th xchang rat down until quantity supplid onc again quals quantity dmandd at. If th actual xchang rat wr to drop blow, say to 2, thn thr would b an xcss dmand for uros qual to C. At a pric of 2, buyrs wish to purchas mor uros than sllrs ar offring for sal, and comptition among buyrs will driv th xchang rat back up to.

3 Not that, sinc th supply of uros ariss from purchass of Amrican goods by Europan rsidnts, and sinc th dmand for uros drivs from Amricans purchass of Europan goods, it follows that if thr is an xcss supply of uros in Figur 1 (a), this mans that at th prvailing xchang rat of 1, Europans ar buying mor goods from Amricans than Amricans ar buying from Europans. Consquntly, an xcss supply of uros mans that Europ has a trad dficit (Europan imports xcd Europan xports) whil th U.. has a trad surplus (U.. xports xcd U.. imports). Convrsly, if thr is an xcss dmand for uros in Figur 8.1 (a), this mans that at th prvailing xchang rat of 2, Amricans ar buying mor goods from Europans than Europans ar buying from Amricans. Thrfor, at 2 th U.. has a trad dficit and Europ has a trad surplus. Howvr, xcss dmands and xcss supplis of forign xchang ar liminatd automatically, in a rgim of flxibl xchang rats, by adjustmnts of th xchang rat toward markt-claring quilibrium. It follows that undr flxibl xchang rats, trad dficits and surpluss ar likwis liminatd through changs in markt xchang rats. For xampl, if thr is an xcss supply of uros, as at 1 in Figur 8.1 (a), th rsulting fall in th uro xchang rat to will rais th uro prics of Amrican goods and lowr th dollar prics of Europan goods, thrfor rducing th quantity of Amrican goods dmandd by Europans and incrasing th quantity of Europan goods dmandd by Amricans, and hnc liminating both Europ's trad dficit and th U..'s trad surplus. An quilibrium xchang rat of $.92 pr uro in Figur 8.1 (a) corrsponds to an quilibrium xchang rat of 1.9 uros pr dollar in Figur 8.1 (b). (1/.92 = 1.9.) In fact, panl (b) is a mirror imag of panl (a). On th vrtical axis in panl (b) w hav th pric of dollars in trms of uros ( /$), which is th invrs of (th pric of uros in trms of dollars). On th horizontal axis of panl (b) w hav th quantity of dollars tradd in th forign xchang markt. As falls in panl (a), th quantity of uros dmandd incrass as w hav sn. But dmanding uros is xactly quivalnt to supplying dollars (in our two-country modl), and thrfor th quantity of dollars supplid incrass as 1/ riss in panl (b). Hnc, th upward sloping supply curv of dollars in panl (b) corrsponds to th downward sloping dmand curv for uros in panl (a). imilarly, as riss in panl (a), th quantity of uros supplid incrass, but supplying uros is xactly quivalnt to dmanding dollars, and thrfor th quantity of dollars dmandd riss as 1/ falls in panl (b). Th downward sloping dmand curv for dollars in panl (b) corrsponds to th upward sloping supply curv of uros in panl (a). In panl (b), th highr is th dollar xchang rat, 1/, th mor xpnsiv ar Amrican goods and assts to Europans and th chapr ar Europan goods and assts to Amricans. Consquntly, a rising valu of 1/ implis a dcrasing quantity of dollars dmandd by Europans to buy Amrican goods and assts, and an incrasing quantity of dollars supplid by Amricans in xchang for uros to buy Europan goods and assts. Again, in Figur 8.1 (b), if th actual xchang rat wr abov th markt-claring xchang rat (which is 1/ = 1.9 uros), thr would b an xcss supply of dollars. For xampl, at an xchang rat of 1/ 2, thr is an xcss supply of dollars qual to

4 C''. If supplirs of dollars (dmandrs of uros) ar offring mor dollars for sal (dmanding mor uros) than buyrs of dollars (supplirs of uros) wish to purchas (sll), thn not only is thr an xcss supply of dollars qual to C'' in panl (b), but thr is also an xactly corrsponding xcss dmand for uros qual to C in panl (a). In this cas, comptition among supplirs of dollars (dmandrs of uros) will driv th dollar xchang rat back down to 1/ (or th uro xchang rat back up to ). At th dollar xchang rat of 1/ 2, Amricans ar buying mor goods from Europans than Europans ar buying from Amricans, so thr is a trad dficit in th U.. and a trad surplus in Europ. Ths trad imbalancs ar liminatd automatically as th fall in th dollar xchang rat from 1/ 2 to 1/ rducs th quantity of Europan goods dmandd by Amricans and incrass th quantity of Amrican goods dmandd by Europans, thrby liminating th xcss supply of dollars (and th xcss dmand for uros). imilarly, if th dollar xchang rat falls blow 1/, say to 1/ 1, thn thr will b an xcss dmand for dollars qual to A'B' in panl (b), which corrsponds to th xcss supply of uros at th uro xchang rat of 1, qual to AB in panl (a). Comptition among buyrs of dollars (or supplirs of uros) will driv th dollar xchang rat back up to 1/ (or th uro xchang rat back down to ). At 1/ 1, Europans ar buying mor goods from Amricans than Amricans ar buying from Europ, so th U.. has a trad surplus and Europ has a trad dficit. Again, howvr, ths surpluss and dficits ar liminatd automatically as th ris in th xchang rat from 1/ 1 to 1/ rducs th quantity of Amrican goods dmandd by Europans and incrass th quantity of Europan goods dmandd by Amricans, thrby wiping out th xcss dmand for dollars (and th xcss supply of uros). Th markt-claring quilibrium xchang rat is calld th purchasing powr parity (PPP) xchang rat. PPP mans that a dollar, whn convrtd into th forign currncy at th quilibrium xchang rat, will buy xactly th sam baskt of goods and srvics in th forign country as it buys in th U.. Changs in upply and mand In a world of flxibl xchang rats, markt quilibrium xchang rats will chang continuously in rspons to changing supply and dmand conditions in th forign xchang markt. upply and dmand curvs for currncis shift as a rsult of changs in a numbr of paramtrs, th most important of which ar incom, pric lvls, and intrst rats. W will xamin ach of ths in turn. Changs in Incom uppos that Europ's ral national incom riss whil that of th U.. rmains constant. An incras in Europan incom will caus an incras in dmand for imports, and thrfor Europans will offr to sll mor uros in xchang for dollars at any givn xchang rat. This is illustratd in Figur 8.2 as a rightward shift of th supply curv of uros. Although it is not shown, thr is, of cours, a corrsponding supply and dmand graph for dollars in which th dmand for dollars incrass as Europans buy mor goods

5 from th U.. and consquntly dmand mor dollars at any givn xchang rat. As indicatd in Figur 8.2, th nt ffct of th incras in Europan incom is a dprciation of th uro and an apprciation of th dollar, i.., th quilibrium dollar pric of uros falls from to 1, maning that fwr dollars ar now rquird to buy any givn numbr of uros, or, quivalntly, mor uros ar ndd to buy any givn numbr of dollars. Pric of uros in dollars ' 1 Figur 8.2 of uros If ral national incom in th U.. wr to ris, whil that of Europ rmaind unchangd, thn Amricans would buy mor imports from Europ at any givn pric of imports, which mans that Amricans would dmand mor uros, or offr mor dollars for sal, at any givn xchang rat. This is illustratd in Figur 8.3 as an incras in th dmand for uros in th forign xchang markt, causing an incras in th quilibrium dollar pric of uros from to 1. As a rsult of th incras in U.. ral incom, th uro has apprciatd and th dollar has dprciatd. Pric of uros in dollars 1 ' of uros

6 Figur 8.3 Changs in pric lvls Figur 8.4 illustrats th ffcts of an incras in th pric lvl in th U. rlativ to th pric lvl in Europ, which could occur for xampl if th U.. had a highr inflation rat than Europ. In this cas, prics of Amrican goods and srvics ar rising rlativ to prics of Europan-producd goods and srvics. Consquntly, Amricans buy fwr domstically-producd goods and srvics and import mor goods and srvics from Europ, which causs an incras in th dmand for uros and an incras in th supply of dollars -- i.., mor dollars ar offrd in xchang for uros at any givn xchang rat as Amricans buy mor goods and srvics from Europ. Th incras in th dmand for uros is illustratd in Figur 8.4 (a) as a rightward shift of th dmand curv for uros, and th incras in th supply of dollars is shown in panl (b) as a rightward shift of th supply curv of dollars. But Europans, too, will buy mor of thir own domstically-producd goods and srvics and thy will import fwr goods and srvics from th U.. Consquntly, th dmand for dollars dcrass, as illustratd by th lftward shift of th dmand curv for dollars in panl (b), and th supply of uros dcrass, as shown by th lftward shift of th supply curv of uros in panl (a). In ffct, Europans offr to sll fwr uros (buy fwr dollars) at any givn xchang rat, bcaus thy ar buying fwr Amrican goods and srvics. Pric of uros in dollars (a) ' Pric of dollars in uros 1/ (b) ' 1 1/ 1/ 1 ' ' of uros of dollars Figur 8.4 As a rsult of th supply and dmand shifts in Figur 8.4, th uro apprciats from to 1 and th dollar dprciats from 1/ to 1/ 1. By how much will th uro apprciat and th dollar dprciat? As long as Amrican tradabl goods ar mor xpnsiv than Europan tradabl goods, U.. imports will continu to ris and Europan imports to fall, so that th dollar will continu to dprciat and th uro to apprciat. A nw xchang rat quilibrium will b attaind onc currncy valus hav changd by nough

7 to xactly compnsat for th divrgnc in pric lvls btwn th two countris, so that purchasing powr parity onc again prvails. If Europ wr xprincing a highr inflation rat than th U.., thn th Europan pric lvl would ris rlativ to th U.. pric lvl, Europan imports would ris, U.. imports would fall, th supply of uros and th dmand for dollars would both incras whil th dmand for uros and th supply of dollars would both dcras, lading to a dprciation of th uro and an apprciation of th dollar until purchasing powr parity is rstord. Th shifts of th supply and dmand curvs for uros and dollars would b just th opposit of thos shown in Figur 8.4. Changs in intrst rats uppos that ral intrst rats wr to ris in Europ rlativ to U.. ral intrst rats. W can us th sam pictur, Figur 8.4, to s th ffcts of this chang. With highr Europan intrst rats, individuals in both countris would now find Europan bonds mor attractiv than U.. bonds. Bfor buying Europan scuritis, howvr, U.. rsidnts would first hav to buy uros, so an incrasd dmand for Europan bonds by Amricans translats into an incrasd dmand for uros at any givn xchang rat, as illustratd in Figur 8.4 (a). Equivalntly, U.. rsidnts will offr to supply mor dollars in xchang for uros, in ordr to buy mor Europan bonds. This is shown as an incras in th supply of dollars in Figur 8.4 (b). At th sam tim, Europans will now prfr to hold thir own Europan bonds rathr than U.. bonds. Bcaus Europans ar now lss intrstd in buying Amrican bonds, thy ar also lss intrstd in buying dollars, or, quivalntly, in slling uros. Thus thr is a dcras in th supply of uros in Figur 8.4 (a) and a corrsponding dcras in th dmand for dollars in Figur 8.4 (b). As can b sn from Figur 8.4, th combind ffct of th incrasd dmand for uros (incrasd supply of dollars) and dcrasd supply of uros (dcrasd dmand for dollars) is an apprciation of th uro from to 1 and a dprciation of th dollar from 1/ to 1/ 1. If U.. ral intrst rats wr to ris rlativ to Europan ral intrst rats, th shifts of th supply and dmand curvs in th forign xchang markt would b just th opposit of thos illustratd in Figur 8.4. Individuals in both countris would now find U.. bonds mor attractiv than Europan bonds. Bfor buying Amrican scuritis, howvr, Europan rsidnts would first hav to buy dollars, so an incrasd dmand for U.. bonds by Europans translats into an incrasd dmand for dollars at any givn xchang rat. Equivalntly, Europan rsidnts will offr to supply mor uros in xchang for dollars, in ordr to buy mor U.. bonds, so thr will b an incras in th supply of uros. At th sam tim, Amricans will now prfr to hold thir own U.. bonds rathr than Europan bonds. Bcaus Amricans ar now lss intrstd in buying Europan bonds, thy ar also lss intrstd in buying uros, or, quivalntly, in slling dollars. Thus thr is a dcras in th supply of dollars and a corrsponding dcras in th dmand for uros. Th combind ffct of th incrasd dmand for dollars (incrasd supply of uros) and dcrasd supply of dollars (dcrasd dmand for uros) is an apprciation of th dollar and a dprciation of th uro.

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