DP649 | Counter-Inflationary Policy in the Framework of the EMS


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The conditions of the `new EMS' - an absence of exchange rate realignments and corresponding added credibility - have given rise to concern about the stabilization properties of the System. Nominal interest rate divergence may have been narrowed ahead of inflation divergence. Cross-country real interest rankings would then assume a negative correlation with the corresponding inflation rankings. The paper argues that on theoretical grounds, a perverse correlation between real interest rates and inflation can be predicted for `old EMS' conditions. Empirical evidence supports this prediction while failing to confirm it for the `new EMS'.