Enzo Matono Gerioni, Lilian Nogueira Rolim, Julia Alencar Omizzolo, Nikolas Alexander van de Bilt Schiozer | Cambridge Journal of Economics


During the 2000s, Brazil accumulated a substantial amount of foreign reserves through foreign exchange market interventions undertaken by its Central Bank. Mainstream economics considers such interventions a restriction to monetary policy autonomy. This article analyses the relationship between monetary policy autonomy and exchange rate regimes theoretically and empirically for the Brazilian economy. We argue that the compensation principle, as a direct derivation of the endogenous money approach, is an alternative to both the trilemma and dilemma views in the mainstream perspective. Then, we provide empirical evidence in favour of the compensation principle in the Brazilian economy by verifying the exogeneity of the interest rate and estimating a vector error-correction model (VECM) that indicates that the foreign reserves do not have a long-term effect on the monetary base, while they present a significant and large effect on the repos account. In line with the compensation view, we conclude that in the 2000s, Brazil had more monetary policy autonomy than conventional approaches would have suggested.


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