Managing Foreign Exchange Risk with Derivatives
59 Pages Posted: 27 Nov 2000
Date Written: May 2000
This study investigates the foreign exchange risk management program of HDG Inc. (pseudonym), an industry leading manufacturer of durable equipment with sales in more than 50 countries. The analysis relies primarily on a three-month field study in the treasury of HDG. Precise examination of factors affecting why and how the firm manages its foreign exchange exposure are explored through the use of internal firm documents, discussions with managers, and data on 3110 foreign-exchange derivative transactions over a three and a half year period. Results indicate that several commonly cited reasons for corporate hedging are probably not the primary motivation for why HDG undertakes a risk management program. Instead, informational asymmetries, facilitation of internal contracting, and competitive pricing concerns seem to motivate hedging. How HDG hedges depends on accounting treatment, derivative market liquidity, foreign exchange volatility, exposure volatility, technical factors, and recent hedging outcomes.
JEL Classification: G32, D81, F31
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation