Estimating the Effects of Exchange Rate Volatility on Export Volumes

By: Wang, Kai-Li; Barrett, Christopher B.


Wang, Kai-Li; Barrett, Christopher B., Estimating the Effects of Exchange Rate Volatility on Export Volumes, Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Volume 32, Issue 2, August 2007, Pages 225-255

This paper takes a new empirical look at the long-standing question of the effect of exchange rate volatility on international trade flows by studying the case of Taiwan's exports to the United States from 1989-1998. In particular, we employ sectoral-level, monthly data and an innovative multivariate GARCH-M estimator with corrections for leptokurtic errors. This estimator allows for the possibility that traders' forward-looking contracting behavior might condition the way in which exchange rate movement and associated risk affect trade volumes. Change in importing country industrial production and change in the expected exchange rate are found to jointly drive the trade volumes. More strikingly, monthly exchange rate volatility affects agricultural trade flows, but not trade in other sectors. These results differ significantly from those obtained using more conventional and restrictive modeling assumptions.