New IIIS research papers

A couple of new papers from the IIIS may be of interest:

Philip R. Lane, Trinity College Dublin and CEPR
Gian Maria Milesi-Ferretti, International Monetary Fund, Research Department and CEPR

IIIS Discussion Paper No. 316

Abstract: We document and assess the role of small financial centers in the international financial system using a newly-assembled dataset. We present estimates of the foreign asset and liability positions for a number of the most important small financial centers, and place these into context by calculating the importance of these locations in the global aggregate of crossborder investment positions. We also report data on bilateral cross-border investment patterns, highlighting which countries engage in financial trade with small financial centers.

Patrick Honohan and Gavin Murphy
Institute for International Integration Studies, Trinity College Dublin

IIIS Discussion Paper No. 317


Ireland had been considering a break in the long-standing currency link with sterling for some time when the ideal opportunity of a new exchange rate regime – potentially retaining the sterling link while stabilizing other exchange rates – seemed to offer itself in the form of the “zone of monetary stability in Europe” proposed by France and Germany in April 1978. Based on newly released archives, this paper reviews the evolving attitude of Irish officials and the Irish Government over the following months as the decision gradually shifted to one of breaking the sterling link and rejoining what was little more than an expanded “Snake” arrangement; the UK having decided to stay out. While financial issues were to the fore in the discussions, the final decision to join was based on a strategic vision that Ireland’s economic and political future lay with Europe rather than with the former colonial power.