An examination of the effects of government purchases in an open economy
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This paper examines the effects of permanent and transitory changes in government purchases in the context of a model of a small open economy that produces and consumes both traded and nontraded goods. The model incorporates an equilibrium interpretation of the business cycle that emphasizes the responsiveness of agents to intertemporal relative price changes. It is demonstrated that transitory increases in government purchases lead to an appreciation of the real exchange rate and an ambiguous change (although a likely worsening) in the current account, while permanent increases have an ambiguous impact on the real exchange rate and no effect on the current account. When agents do not know whether a given increase in government purchases is permanent or transitory the effect is a weighted average of these separate effects. The weights depend on the relative variances of the transitory and permanent components of government purchases. © 1985.