Debates surrounding the adoption of a common currency have focused on its benefits weighed against the long-term costs of losing monetary independence. These debates have assumed that the penalty for not adopting a common currency is the maintenance of the status quo. This paper uses the Sjaastad model to analyze the price-making power of major currencies with regard to the prices of traded goods in small countries that have not adopted the euro and uses the Bayoumi-Eichengreen OCA index methodology to shed further light on changes in Europe. The empirical evidence suggests that small countries that have not adopted the euro have increasingly seen a change in the determinants of their traded goods prices. This seems to contrast with the experience of small countries that adopted the euro. The results need to be interpreted carefully, given the short time series.
Recent empirical research finds that pairs of countries with stronger trade linkages tend to have more highly correlated business cycles. We assess whether the standard international business cycle framework can replicate this intuitive result. We employ a three-country model with transportation costs. We simulate the effects of increased goods market integration under two asset market structures, complete markets and international financial autarky. Our main finding is that under both asset market structures the model can generate stronger correlations for pairs of countries that trade more, but the increased correlation falls far short of the empirical findings. Even when we control for the fact that most country-pairs are small with respect to the rest of the world, the model continues to fall short. We also conduct additional simulations that allow for increased trade with the third country or increased TFP shock comovement to affect the country pair's business cycle comovement. These simulations are helpful in highlighting channels that could narrow the gap between the empirical findings and the predictions of the model.