Department of Economics Discussion Paper, University of Kent 9806
This paper uses high-frequency data to examine the relation between official and free-market exchange rates in Albania. We use daily data to test econometrically, first, whether the official and free markets are efficient, in the sense that one cannot use exchange rate movements denominated in one currency to predict movements in another currency, and second, whether movements in the free-market rate "cause" movements in the official rate. Our results provide support for the first proposition and partial support for the second. We also report the results of a unique survey of free-market dealers in Tirana, designed to determine the main factors that influence exchange rate movements. The evidence is that country-specific factors, in particular the large flows of illegal smuggling and emigrants' remittances, are more important than flunctuations in the international exchange market.