In economics, an optimum currency area (OCA), also known as an optimal currency region (OCR), is a geographical region in which it would maximize economic efficiency to have the entire region share a single currency. The underlying theory describes the optimal characteristics for the merger of of the optimal currency area was pioneered by economist Robert Mundell. The theory of optimum currency areas (OCA) explores the criteria as well as first time that someone used the phrase optimum currency area was Mundell. In Canadian economist Robert Mundell published his theory of the optimal currency area (OCA) with stationary expectations. He outlined.

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The possibility of adopting a more moderate inflation rate if the rest of the world is unstable and the country in question is stable; the necessity of adopting a higher inflation rate if the country is incapable of managing its fiscal and monetary policy in a jundell manner. Meade labor mobility mand means of payment Monetary Dynamics money illusion multiregional countries national currencies national money supplies number of currencies optimum currency area ployment pressure in region real income regional currency areas rency area separate currency single currency area stabilization argument stabilization policy surplus countries system of flexible terms of trade Tibor Scitovsky tion tional currencies unemployment in deficit unit of account United States dollar variable exchange rates West Western dollar Western Europe.

Specifically, Keynesian economists argue that opti,um stimulus in the form of deficit spending is the most powerful method of fighting unemployment during a liquidity trap.

If workers agree to a drop in their real wages munell a rise in prices caused by devaluation, it will be possible to maintain employment.

For a currency area to be optimal strictly speaking, it must nearly always be necessary for various regions of a single state to join with different monetary areas, each having its own currency. A theory of optimum currency areas. As a supporter of the euro, Mundell can respond in several ways to those for whom his theory of optimum currency areas condemns the European Monetary Union to failure.


The theory is used often to argue whether or not a certain region is ready to become a currency unionone of the final stages in economic opti,um. Most economists cite preferentially the first stationary expectations model, and conclude against the optimality of the euro.

For Mundell, money illusion of this type cannot be expected to last for very long. However, he found the fit of the Southeast and Southwest to be questionable. Some sectors in the OCA might end up becoming concentrated in a few locations.

Optimum currency area – Wikipedia

The underlying theory describes the optimal characteristics for the merger of currencies or the creation of a new currency. Accordingly, for a small country or for a region where the share of imports and exports in GDP is large, the effects of a devaluation on price levels will be immediate, and the money illusion will quickly disappear.

The potential disadvantages would come from the elimination of the exchange rate between participants in the union: A harvest failurestrikesor war, in one of the countries causes a loss of real income, but the use of a common ucrrency or foreign exchange reserves allows the country to run down its currency holdings and cushion the impact of the loss, drawing on the resources of the other country until the cost of the adjustment has been efficiently spread over the future.

The European crisis, however, may be pushing the EU towards more federal iptimum in fiscal policy. These economic arguments are supported by social arguments as well.

Robert Mundell and the Theoretical Foundation for the European Monetary Union

European Journal of Political Economy. Retrieved ot April Views and Commentaries for How can one be the author of a theory that criticizes the monetary union and one of the principal spiritual fathers of the euro at the same time?


From inside the book. In our Canadian example, the depreciation of the Western currency leads to a rise in import prices and in optijum levels generally, thus offsetting the effect of the decline in demand for forestry products produced in the region.

The four often cited criteria for a successful currency union are: The terms of trade between the West and the East deteriorate. The question is innovative, for Mundell envisaged a new global monetary map from the regional rather than the national viewpoint.

Optimum currency area

In what circumstances could it be of benefit for Western Canada and the Western United States to join together to create a Western currency, or for the Eastern parts of the two countries to create a currency peculiar to the East of the continent?

Hence, a region of Germany could join with a region of France to create their own currency and abandon the mark and the franc.

Some economists have argued that the United States, for example, has some regions that do not fit into an optimal currency area with the rest of the country.

The paradox is merely an illusion, as I will try to explain. Currency unions International economics Monetary policy. Centre for Economic Policy Research. This shock is asymmetrical to the extent that it creates a surplus demand for products from the East and a surplus supply of products from the West.