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Monetary union in West Africa and business cycles synchronicity: New evidence

Daniel Simons and Rosmy Jean Louis

The World Economy, 2018, vol. 41, issue 10, 2828-2848

Abstract: In the light of the initiative of the West African Monetary Zone (WAMZ) to introduce a common currency by 2020, this paper investigates the intricacies of the business cycles synchronicity among the six countries. Given: (i) the rising importance of trade and cooperation with China; (ii) the consideration of the Euro as a potential anchor currency and a vehicle for trade with the Eurozone; and (iii) the importance of Nigeria as the largest country of the group and the main supplier of oil, we investigate the relative importance of these three major players in having their business cycles linked with the group. In addition, we investigate the underlying determinants of the business cycles synchronicity among the WAMZ countries on a pairwise basis. Results show a clear dominance of China's business cycle synchronicity with the WAMZ over Europe's and Nigeria's. Trade integration emerges as the key underlying factor of the common cycle observed.

Date: 2018
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