Copius Structural Shifts in Exchange Rates of the South African Rand (Post-1994): Do They Matter (for Unit Root Testing)? What are the Most Likely Triggers?

Working paper 359
Author(s): 
Cyril May
Publication date: 
July, 2013
Journal: 
J.Stud.Econ.Econometrics, 2015, 39 (1)
Classification-JEL: 

There is a theoretical case for real exchange rates to be stationary, but conventional unit root tests generally find nonstationarity in most economic data expressed in nominal terms; exchange rates in particular. Perron (1989) questioned the latter interpretation on the basis that the presence of a unit root may be a manifestation of not allowing for structural change — a finding reaffirmed later by Zivot and Andrews (1992) and Clemente et al (1998) when single and double sudden and gradual endogenous breakpoints are accounted for in unit root tests. This paper considers testing for structural breaks and unit roots — in the presence of structural shifts — in the univariate data generating process (DGP) of the key nominal foreign exchange rates of the South African rand. Additionally, the connexions between the timing of the structural shifts and important economic and noneconomic events are explored.

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