Quiz 18: Forward Exchange and International Financial Investment

Business

You will need data on four market rates: The current interest rate (or yield) on bonds issued by the U.S. government that mature in one year, the current interest rate (or yield) on bonds issued by the British government that mature in one year, the current spot exchange rate between the dollar and pound, and the current one-year forward exchange rate between the dollar and pound. Do these rates result in a covered interest differential that is very close to zero

a.The U.S. firm has an asset position in yen-it has a long position in yen. To hedge its exposure to exchange rate risk, the firm should enter into a forward exchange contract now in which the firm commits to sell yen and receive dollars at the current forward rate. The contract amounts are to sell 1 million yen and receive $9,000, both in 60 days. b.The student has an asset position in yen-a long position in yen. To hedge the exposure to exchange rate risk, the student should enter into a forward exchange contract now in which the student commits to sell yen and receive dollars at the current forward rate. The contract amounts are to sell 10 million yen and receive $90,000, both in 60 days. c.The U.S. firm has an liability position in yen-a short position in yen. To hedge its exposure to exchange rate risk, the firm should enter into a forward exchange contract now in which the firm commits to sell dollars and receive yen at the current forward rate. The contract amounts are to sell $900,000 and receive 100 million yen, both in 60 days.

Relative to your expected spot value of the euro in 90 days ($1.22/euro), the current forward rate of the euro ($1.18/euro) is low-the forward value of the euro is relatively low. Using the principle of "buy low, sell high," you can speculate by entering into a forward contract now to buy euros at $1.18/euro. If you are correct in your expectation, then in 90 days you will be able to immediately resell those euros for $1.22/euro, pocketing a profit of $0.04 for each euro that you bought forward. If many people speculate in this way, then massive purchases now of euros forward (increasing the demand for euros forward) will tend to drive up the forward value of the euro, toward a current forward rate of $1.22/euro.