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The relationship between the black market and official exchange rates: an examination of long-run dynamics in India

Chandra, R. and Love, J. (2007) The relationship between the black market and official exchange rates: an examination of long-run dynamics in India. Scottish Journal of Political Economy, 54 (2). pp. 283-294. ISSN 0036-9292

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This study is the first to use Johansen's cointegration approach for India in the analysis of the long-term dynamics between the black and official exchange rates for the period 1953-1993. The study also estimates the long-run elasticity of the official rate with respect to the black market rate. As monthly data over 40 years are used, and a more robust methodology is employed, the results are likely to be more reliable as compared with the earlier work on India. The results of our study suggest that while there is a long-term relationship between the two rates, the direction of causality is from the black rate to the official exchange rate. This is plausible in the Indian context where policy has generally lagged behind events in the black market. The hypothesis of a constant black market premium is rejected, implying that there is a mismatch between the percentage change in the official exchange rate and the percentage change in the black market rate.