International Finance and Financial Policy

By Hans R. Stoll | Go to book overview

Introduction

HANS R. STOLL

The papers in this volume on international finance and financial policy provide insight into and analysis of the growing importance of financial markets in the international economy. The papers are grouped into three parts: international imbalances and international policy coordination, the international debt crisis, and global financial markets. Part I deals with a subject of long-standing interest in international finance: how to deal with international trade imbalances. These papers take dramatically different positions as to the causes and cures of the U.S. trade deficit and the associated fiscal deficit, but all put more emphasis on the role of financial flows than would have been the case 20 years ago. Part II examines the international debt crisis. This debt crisis is complicated by the greater role of private international financial flows to developing countries than was the case 20 years ago. Part III addresses the developments in the structure and functioning of global financial markets.


INTERNATIONAL IMBALANCES AND INTERNATIONAL POLICY COORDINATION

John Makin, Director of Fiscal Policy Studies at the American Enterprise Institute, takes the position that the continued U.S. current account deficit, in spite of a large depreciation of the dollar, reflects an equilibrium situation, not a disequilibrium situation. According to Makin, both international imbalances and exchange rate movements during the 1980s were the endogenous outcomes of more fundamental exogenous forces, and the inability of exchange rate changes to eliminate imbalances can be explained by these forces. These imbalances have been temporarily accentuated by certain events, such as (1) the inconsistent monetary and fiscal policies in the United States, Europe, and Japan; and

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