Helge Berger

Helge Berger is Professor and Chair of Monetary Economics at Free University Berlin and coeditor of Managing EU Enlargement (MIT Press, 2004).

  • Currency Boards in Retrospect and Prospect

    Currency Boards in Retrospect and Prospect

    Holger C. Wolf, Atish R. Ghosh, Helge Berger, and Anne-Marie Gulde

    An authoritative analysis that employs economic theory, cross-country empirical comparison, and case studies to analyze the effect of currency boards on inflation, output growth and macroeconomic performance.

    Currency boards, more so than other exchange rate regimes, have come in and out of fashion. Defined by a fixed exchange rate with full convertibility, central bank liabilities backed with foreign exchange reserves, and a high cost of exiting the regime, currency boards were common in colonial times—until most were cast off as countries gained independence after World War II. In the 1990s, currency boards enjoyed a revival as the cornerstone of various macroeconomic stabilization programs—including many in central and eastern European transition economies—only to fall into disfavor again with the collapse of the Argentine regime in 2002. The authors of Currency Boards in Retrospect and Prospect take a balanced look at the effects of currency board regimes on inflation, output growth, and macroeconomic performance more generally. Drawing on historical experience, economic theory, cross-country empirical analysis, and case studies of currency boards in Argentina, Estonia, Lithuania, Bulgaria, and Bosnia and Herzegovina, the authors conclude that currency boards deliver significant reductions in inflation compared to other regimes and do not seem to result in slower growth or a markedly higher vulnerability to crisis.

    • Hardcover $40.00
  • Managing European Union Enlargement

    Managing European Union Enlargement

    Helge Berger and Thomas Moutos

    Leading international economists assess the effects of the 2004 expansion of the European Union.

    In May 2004 the European Union will undergo the largest expansion in its history when ten countries—Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Slovakia, and Slovenia—become members. The number of new members and their diversity make this "big bang" enlargement particularly challenging. Not only do these countries vary widely in language, culture, and geography, but also their per capita income is less than half that of existing members. EU officials believe that expanded integration will serve the EU's objectives of peace, stability, prosperity, and democracy; but the less abstract questions of costs and benefits of enlargement are more complex.

    Each of the chapters in this CESifo volume addresses a different aspect of EU expansion. The contributors, all leading international practitioners and scholars, consider such topics as the effect of euro zone expansion on European Central Bank monetary policy making; using the euro as an external anchor for a national currency; worker migration and income differentials; the Swiss experience with immigration policy in a direct democracy framework; detailed sector analysis using a computable general equilibrium model of the world economy; investment and job creation and destruction in incumbent member countries; and the asymmetric effects of enlargement on high- and low-income incumbent countries. Taken together, the chapters provide useful guidance in shaping the EU policies of the future.

    • Hardcover $8.75
    • Paperback $35.00

Contributor

  • Global Interdependence, Decoupling, and Recoupling

    Global Interdependence, Decoupling, and Recoupling

    Yin-Wong Cheung and Frank Westermann

    Investigations of the propagation and influence of global shocks among the economies of developed and developing countries.

    One lens through which to view global economic interdependence and the spillover of shocks is that of decoupling (and then recoupling). Decoupling between developed and developing countries can be seen in the strong economic performance of China and India relative to that of the United States and Europe in the early 2000s. Recoupling then took place as developing countries sank along with the developed world during the deepening financial crisis of 2008. This volume examines patterns of global economic interdependence and the propagation of shocks in an increasingly integrated world economy.

    The contributors discuss such topics as the transmission of exogenous shocks; causes of business cycle synchronicity; the differences between global and regional shocks; the South-South trade relationship and its effect on decoupling; vertical specialization and Mexico's manufacturing exports; growth prospects in China, the United States, and Europe after the financial crisis; and the evolving role of the U.S. dollar in international monetary architecture.

    Contributors Helge Berger, Rossella Calvi, Yin-Wong Cheung, Gianluca Cubadda, Justino De La Cruz, Filippo di Mauro, Michael Dooley, Eiji Fujii, Linda S. Goldberg, Barbara Guardabascio, Alain Hecq, Hideaki Hirata, Robert B. Koopman, M. Ayhan Kose, Marco J. Lombardi, Steven Lugauer, Nelson C. Mark, Volker Nitsch, Christopher Otrok, Tuomas Antero Peltonen, Gabor Pula, Pierre L. Siklos, Zhi Wang, Shang-Jin Wei, Frank Westermann

    • Hardcover $37.00 £7.99
  • Central Bank Communication, Decision Making, and Governance

    Central Bank Communication, Decision Making, and Governance

    Issues, Challenges, and Case Studies

    Pierre L. Siklos and Jan-Egbert Sturm

    Experts analyze the recent emphasis on central communication as an additional policy and accountability device.

    In recent years central bankers have placed new emphasis on communication with financial markets and the general public. They have done this not only through the traditional channel of monetary policy pronouncements but also by increasing the quantity of information they make public. Yet as central banks strive to provide more and clearer information about the outlook for the economy, they must balance their capacity to steer economic expectations with their natural caution about committing to future monetary policy paths. This volume offers a variety of perspectives on the economic implications of increased central bank communication.

    Contributors offer theoretical analyses of the effect of central bank communication on the general macroeconomic environment; consider a variety of novel empirical approaches to the issue; and analyze communication, decision making, and governance practices of the Greenspan-era U.S. Federal Reserve, the fledgling European Central Bank, and a variety of smaller central banks, including those of the Czech Republic, Sweden, England, and New Zealand.

    Contributors Helge Berger, Michelle Bligh, Marianna Blix-Grimaldi, Aleš Bulíř, Robert Chirinko, Martin Čihák, Christopher Curran, Paul De Grauwe, Jakob de Haan, Michael Ehrmann, Marcel Fratzscher, Petra Geraats, Gregory Hess, Roman Horváth, David-Jan Jansen, Özer Karagedikli, Michael Lamla, David Mayes, Alberto Montagnoli, Pierre L. Siklos, Kateřina Šmídková, Jan-Egbert Sturm, Jan Zápal

    • Hardcover $39.00
  • Illicit Trade and the Global Economy

    Illicit Trade and the Global Economy

    Cláudia Costa Storti and Paul De Grauwe

    Economists explore the relationship between expanding international trade and the parallel growth in illicit trade, including illegal drugs, smuggling, and organized crime.

    As international trade has expanded dramatically in the postwar period—an expansion accelerated by the opening of China, Russia, India, and Eastern Europe—illicit international trade has grown in tandem with it. This volume uses the economist's toolkit to examine the economic, political, and social problems resulting from such illicit activities as illegal drug trade, smuggling, and organized crime.

    The contributors consider several aspects of the illegal drug market, including the sometimes puzzling relationships among purity, price, and risk; the effect of globalization on the heroin and cocaine markets, examined both through mathematical models and with empirical data from the U.K; the spread of khat, a psychoactive drug imported legally to the U.K. as a vegetable; and the economic effect of the “war on drugs” on producer and consumer countries. Other chapters examine the hidden financial flows of organized crime, patterns of smuggling in international trade, Iran's illicit trading activity, and the impact of mafia-like crime on foreign direct investment in Italy.

    • Hardcover $37.00