Exchange Rate Flexibility

Exchange Rate Flexibility

Exchange Rate Flexibility

Exchange Rate Flexibility

Excerpt

This volume contains the edited proceedings of the Conference on Exchange Rate Flexibility and the International Monetary System, cosponsored by the American Enterprise Institute and the U.S. Treasury and held at the American Enterprise Institute on April 20-22, 1976. The conference brought together leading researchers, officials, and members of the business and financial communities from the United States and abroad to analyze the performance of the new system of flexible exchange rates and to discuss the major policy issues concerning exchange rates and the international monetary system.

The conference was divided into five sessions. The first three focused primarily on the behavior and effects of floating exchange rates. The fourth and fifth sessions centered on two of the major issues facing the new international monetary system--the international surveillance of exchange rate and balance of payments policies and the management and control of international liquidity. The first session was designed to provide a broad overview of the experience with floating exchange rates, while the second and third sessions concentrated more narrowly on two major aspects of the experience with floating rates, the operation of the foreign exchange market, and the effects of flexible exchange rates on international trade and investment. Each session began with the presentation of one or more papers followed by the comments of a number of lead panelists and then general discussion among the participants. Summaries of the general discussion are presented at the end of each session.

The three papers delivered at the first session--Evaluation of the Performance of the Floating Exchange Rate Regime--differed considerably in their points of emphasis. Edward M. Bernstein, president of EMB (Ltd.) and a former high official with both the U.S. Treasury and the International Monetary Fund, indicated a number of areas in which floating rates had performed relatively successfully. He concentrated, however, on what he felt had been a major shortcoming of their performance, that is, the high volatility of certain exchange rates. This became a major topic of discussion continuing through the first three . . .

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