An electronic board shows currency exchange rates, February 19, 2020.

Publication Type

Dollar not so dominant: Dollar invoicing has only a small effect on trade prices

Working Papers 21-16
Photo Credit: REUTERS/Ricardo Moraes


This paper estimates and tests four models of the effects of exchange rate changes on export prices. It supports the Goldberg and Knetter (1997) canonical result that exporters adjust their prices by about half of any movement in exchange rates. A new twist is that exchange rate movements against importing countries account for only three-fifths of this price adjustment, while exchange rate movements against a dominant currency account for the other two-fifths. The dominant currency is the euro in Europe and Africa and the US dollar in Asia and the Western Hemisphere. The recent claim that the dollar is the most important driver of export prices (Gopinath et al. 2020) is shown to be valid only for the smallest exporting economies. For the bulk of international trade, the extra effects of the dollar (or the euro) beyond their effects as exporter or importer currencies are relatively modest.

Data Disclosure:

The data underlying this analysis can be downloaded here [zip].

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