Monetary and Economic Studies Vol.15, No.2 / December 1997

Financial Repression and Capital Mobility: Why Capital Flows and Covered Interest Rate Differentials Fail to Measure Capital Market Integration

Menzie D.Chinn, Michael P.Dooley

Required reserves on banks' deposit liabilities have been utilized by both industrial and developing countries to discourage and sterilize international capital flows. In this paper, we utilize an open economy macro model incorporating bank credit to evaluate this policy. The model suggests that high levels of reserve requirements are a perverse policy tool in that they amplify the effects of foreign monetary shocks, but changes in reserve requirements can insulate a repressed financial market from international financial shocks. The model also suggests that traditional measures of capital mobility such as interest parity conditions or the scale of gross private capital flows are of no value in assessing the openness of repressed financial systems.

Keywords: Capital mobility; Monetary transmission; Bank credit

Views expressed in the paper are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the Bank of Japan or Institute for Monetary and Economic Studies.

Copyright © 1997 Bank of Japan All Rights Reserved.

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