Managing the Tide: How Do Emerging Markets Respond to Capital Flows?


Atish R. Ghosh ; Jonathan David Ostry ; Mahvash S Qureshi

Publication Date:

March 27, 2017

Electronic Access:

Free Download. Use the free Adobe Acrobat Reader to view this PDF file

Disclaimer: IMF Working Papers describe research in progress by the author(s) and are published to elicit comments and to encourage debate. The views expressed in IMF Working Papers are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the views of the IMF, its Executive Board, or IMF management.


This paper examines whether—and how—emerging market economies (EMEs) respond to capital flows to mitigate their untoward consequences. Based on a sample of about 50 EMEs over 2005Q1–2013Q4, we find that EME policy makers respond proactively to capital inflows by using a combination of policy tools: central banks raise the policy interest rate to address economic overheating concerns; intervene in the foreign exchange market to resist currency appreciation pressures; tighten macroprudential measures to dampen credit growth; and deploy capital inflow controls in the face of competitiveness and financial-stability concerns. Contrary to conventional policy advice to EMEs, we find no evidence of counter-cyclical fiscal policy in the face of capital inflows. Overall, policies are more likely to respond, and used in combination, during inflow surges than in more normal times.


Working Paper No. 2017/069



Publication Date:

March 27, 2017



Stock No:




Please address any questions about this title to