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Bank of Finland Research Discussion Papers, Bank of Finland

No 25/2001:
Finnish monetary and foreign exchange policy and the changeover to the euro

Tapio Korhonen

Abstract: This paper presents the salient aspects of Finlandís monetary and exchange rate policies during the run-up to monetary union in the 1990s. In the course of slightly more than a decade, Finlandís monetary and exchange rate policies were thoroughly revamped. The remnants of heavy regulation were removed and a market-based financial system was put in place. There were serious problems associated with the liberalisation process in the early part of the decade, the most noteworthy being an economic and banking crisis. Finlandís financial system nonetheless developed rapidly and became a more integrated part of the global system. As regards exchange rate policy, almost all varieties of exchange rate regime were tried. A fixed rate regime based on a currency index fell apart in the early part of the decade and was replaced by a floating rate system. Later, in 1993, this was combined with an inflation-targeting monetary policy strategy. At the start of 1995 Finland joined the European Union, and in October 1996 the markka was joined to the EUís Exchange Rate Mechanism. The improvement in financial and price stability that followed the economic crisis facilitated the adjustment to the euro areaís single currency and single monetary policy at the start of 1999, which was accomplished without serious problems.

Keywords: monetary policy; foreign exchange policy; EMU; euro; monetary policy arrangements; (follow links to similar papers)

51 pages, December 3, 2001

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