Quantitative easing and related capital flows into Brazil: measuring its effects and transmission channels through a rigorous counterfactual evaluation

Available from: 
July 2013

João Barata R. B. Barroso (Banco Central do Brasil, Research Department)
Luiz A. Pereira da Silva (Banco Central do Brasil, International Affairs and Risk Management, and Financial Regulation)
Adriana Soares Sales (Banco Central do Brasil, Department of Foreign Reserves)

This paper investigates whether quantitative easing policies produces spillover effects from advanced economies into emerging markets affecting prices and asset markets, and, if so, how much of these effects is attributed to “excessive”capital inflows. We focus on the Brazilian economy and on quantitative easing (QE) policies adopted by the Federal Reserve. Our evaluation methodology is an extension of Pesaran and Smith (2012) and estimates ex-ante and ex-post policy effects over a grid of counterfactuals. We also provide a decomposition of the transmission channels of the policy effects, and test for their statistical significance. The decomposition method is novel and stems from a vector autoregressive model of the endogenous variables where the different channels are represented. Our results are consistent with the view that QE policies had a positive effect on growth but also had other significant spillover effects on the Brazilian economy. These effects were mostly transmitted through “excessive” capital inflows that led to exchange rate appreciation, stock market price increases and a credit boom. The effect on inflation was less robust, mitigated by currency appreciation and dependent on whether global activity reacts more strongly to quantitative easing.

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