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Independencia legal de la banca central en la América Latina e inflación


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  • Jácome H, Luis I.

    (Departamento de Asuntos Monetarios y Cambiarios, Fondo Monetario Internacional, e investigador visitante de la Universidad de Georgetown)


This paper reviews the nature of the independence granted to central banks in Latin America after the reform adopted during the first half of the 1990s, quantifies the degree of their legal independence, and ascertains if there has been a negative correlation between legal central bank independence and inflation during the 1990s.Three basic conclusions emerge from the analysis. First, most central banks in Latin America enjoy today a high level of political and operational independence from a strictly legal point of view. Second, there is no clear correlation between increased legal central bank independence and inflation over the 1990s. And third, there seems to be a gap between de jure and de facto independence of central banks in the region, with the latter beign negatively and significantly correlated with inflaction. // La América Latina vive un periodo de baja inflación comparada con la observada a lo largo de los decenios recientes. Este resultado obedece en gran parte a la implantación de un manejo monetario y fiscal ordenado dirigido a reducir la inflación. Para establecer un compromiso de largo plazo con la disciplina macroeconómica y con la estabilidad de precios, una de las decisiones adoptadas por los gobiernos fue la entrega de una mayor autonomía a los bancos centrales de la región. Este documento analiza el status de independencia de la banca central en la América Latina luego de la reforma legal adoptada en los años noventa y destaca sus principales características. Sobre esta base, cuantifica el grado de independencia legal en 17 países, utilizando para ello el índice de Cukierman y otro índice que incorpora criterios que han adquirido relevancia en los años recientes en la discusión respecto a buenas prácticas en el establecimiento de la autonomía de los bancos centrales. A continuación el documento contrasta el grado de independencia legal de los bancos centrales con el comportamiento de la inflación en los años noventa. Tres son las conclusiones principales que se obtienen de este trabajo: i) la mayoría de los bancos centrales en la América Latina goza hoy de un alto grado de independencia legal; ii) no existe una correlación sólida entre mayor independencia legal y menor inflación, y iii) hay una brecha entre independencia de jure e independencia de facto de los bancos centrales en la América Latina. Utilizando la tasa de rotación de gobernadores de bancos centrales como indicador de independencia efectiva, se encuentra una correlación significativa y sólida respecto al comportamiento de la inflación.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Fondo de Cultura Económica in its journal El Trimestre Económico.

Volume (Year): LXX (4) (2003)
Issue (Month): 280 (octubre-diciembre)
Pages: 673-719

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Handle: RePEc:elt:journl:v:70:y:2003:i:280:p:673-719

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Keywords: independencia de banco centrales; inflación; América Latina;

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Cited by:
  1. Agustín Carstens, & Luis I. Jácome, 2005. "The 1990s Institutional Reform of Monetary Policy in Latin America," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile, Central Bank of Chile 343, Central Bank of Chile.


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