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Competence Implies Credibility

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  • Giuseppe Moscarini

Abstract

The (reputation for) competence of a central bank at doing its job makes monetary policy under discretion credible and transparent. Based on its reading of the state of the economy, the central bank announces its policy intentions to the public in a cheap-talk game. The precision of its private signal measures its competence. The fineness of the equilibrium message space measures its credibility and transparency. This is increasing in the competence/inflation bias ratio: the public expects a competent central bank to use its discretion more to pursue its "objective" targets than to surprise expectations and stimulate output. (JEL E52, E58)

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by American Economic Association in its journal American Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 97 (2007)
Issue (Month): 1 (March)
Pages: 37-63

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Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:97:y:2007:i:1:p:37-63

Note: DOI: 10.1257/aer.97.1.37
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  1. Robert J. Barro & David B. Gordon, 1981. "A Positive Theory of Monetary Policy in a Natural-Rate Model," NBER Working Papers 0807, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Matthew B. Canzoneri, 1983. "Monetary policy games and the role of private information," International Finance Discussion Papers, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.) 249, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  3. Susan Athey & Andrew Atkeson & Patrick J. Kehoe, 2005. "The Optimal Degree of Discretion in Monetary Policy," Econometrica, Econometric Society, Econometric Society, vol. 73(5), pages 1431-1475, 09.
  4. Benabou, R. & Laroque, G., 1989. "Using Privileged Information To Manipulate Markets: Insiders, Gurus, And Credibility," Working papers 513, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  5. Lars E.O. Svensson, 2002. "What Is Wrong with Taylor Rules? Using Judgment in Monetary Policy through Targeting Rules," Working Papers 118, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Center for Economic Policy Studies..
  6. Krishna, Vijay & Morgan, John, 2004. "The art of conversation: eliciting information from experts through multi-stage communication," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 117(2), pages 147-179, August.
  7. Stephen Morris, 1999. "Political Correctness," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University 1242, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  8. Mark Gertler & Jordi Gali & Richard Clarida, 1999. "The Science of Monetary Policy: A New Keynesian Perspective," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(4), pages 1661-1707, December.
  9. Petra M. Geraats, 2002. "Central Bank Transparency," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(483), pages 532-565, November.
  10. Christian Hellwig, 2002. "Public Announcements, Adjustment Delays, and the Business Cycle (November 2002)," UCLA Economics Online Papers 208, UCLA Department of Economics.
  11. Stein, Jeremy C, 1989. "Cheap Talk and the Fed: A Theory of Imprecise Policy Announcements," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 79(1), pages 32-42, March.
  12. Prendergast, Canice & Stole, Lars, 1996. "Impetuous Youngsters and Jaded Old-Timers: Acquiring a Reputation for Learning," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(6), pages 1105-34, December.
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Cited by:
  1. Manuel Amador & Pierre-Olivier Weill, 2008. "Learning from Prices: Public Communication and Welfare," NBER Working Papers 14255, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Vithessonthi, Chaiporn & Techarongrojwong, Yaowaluk, 2012. "The impact of monetary policy decisions on stock returns: Evidence from Thailand," Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 22(3), pages 487-507.
  3. Rhee, Hyuk Jae & Turdaliev, Nurlan, 2013. "Central bank transparency: Does it matter?," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 27(C), pages 183-197.
  4. Turdaliev, Nurlan, 2010. "Communication in repeated monetary policy games," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 228-243, April.
  5. Timothy Swanson & Chiara Ravetti & Yana Popp Jin & Mu Quan & Zhang Shiqiu, 2014. "Air pollution in Urban Beijing: The role of Government-controlled information," IHEID Working Papers, Economics Section, The Graduate Institute of International Studies 27-2014, Economics Section, The Graduate Institute of International Studies.
  6. Vithessonthi, Chaiporn & Techarongrojwong, Yaowaluk, 2013. "Do monetary policy announcements affect stock prices in emerging market countries? The case of Thailand," Journal of Multinational Financial Management, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 23(5), pages 446-469.
  7. Ricardo Reis, 2011. "When Should Policymakers Make Announcements?," 2011 Meeting Papers 122, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  8. Di Maggio, Marco, 2009. "Accountability and Cheap Talk," MPRA Paper 18652, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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