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Three Models of Imperfect Transparency in Monetary Policy

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  • Demertzis, Maria
  • Hughes Hallett, Andrew

Abstract

We present three different models of imperfect transparency in monetary policy: political transparency, economic transparency and constructive ambiguity. The first two show that transparency reduces the variability of inflation and the output gap but does not affect their average levels. But if the Central Bank is unable to commit to one particular set of preferences for all circumstances, in line with the hypothesis of constructive ambiguity, we find that both the levels and the variability of output and inflation may be affected. An empirical examination of these predictions, based on an index recently constructed by Eijffinger and Geraats, shows that macroeconomic averages are not much affected by transparency. But transparency appears to reduce the variability of inflation while increasing the variability of output. That suggests that Central Banks may have been exploiting constructive ambiguity more than a lack of transparency.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 4117.

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Date of creation: Nov 2003
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:4117

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Keywords: ambiguity; imperfect transparency; independent monetary policies; rational inattention;

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References

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  1. Kenneth N. Kuttner & Adam S. Posen, 1999. "Does talk matter after all? Inflation targeting and central bank behavior," Staff Reports 88, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  2. Julio J. Rotemberg & Michael Woodford, 1998. "An Optimization-Based Econometric Framework for the Evaluation of Monetary Policy: Expanded Version," NBER Technical Working Papers 0233, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Demertzis, Maria & Andrew Hughes Hallett, 2003. "Central Bank Transparency in Theory and Practice," Royal Economic Society Annual Conference 2003 56, Royal Economic Society.
  4. Petra M. Geraats, 2002. "Central Bank Transparency," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(483), pages 532-565, November.
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  9. Sibert, Anne, 2001. "Monetary Policy With Uncertain Central Bank Preferences," CEPR Discussion Papers 3113, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  16. Eijffinger, Sylvester C. W. & Hoeberichts, Marco, 2000. "Central Bank accountability and transparency: theory and some evidence," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2000,06, Deutsche Bundesbank, Research Centre.
  17. Jensen, Henrik, 2002. " Optimal Degrees of Transparency in Monetary Policymaking," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 104(3), pages 399-422, September.
  18. Balke, Nathan S & Haslag, Joseph H, 1992. "A Theory of Fed Watching in a Macroeconomic Policy Game," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 33(3), pages 619-28, August.
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  25. Kenneth N. Kuttner & Adam S. Posen, 2000. "Inflation, Monetary Transparency, and G3 Exchange Rate Volatility," Working Paper Series WP00-6, Peterson Institute for International Economics.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Demertzis, Maria & Andrew Hughes Hallett, 2003. "Central Bank Transparency in Theory and Practice," Royal Economic Society Annual Conference 2003 56, Royal Economic Society.
  2. Jan Libich, 2006. "Inflexibility Of Inflation Targeting Revisited: Modeling The "Anchoring"Effect," CAMA Working Papers 2006-02, Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.
  3. Buigut, Steven & Valev, Neven T., 2009. "Benefits from Mutual Restraint in a Multilateral Monetary Union," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 37(3), pages 585-594, March.
  4. Carsten Hefeker, 2011. "Policy Uncertainty and Economic Reforms in a Monetary Union," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 12(3), pages 274-285, 08.
  5. Meixing DAI & Moïse SIDIROPOULOS, 2009. "Fiscal Policy in a Monetary Union in the Presence of Uncertainty about the Central Bank Preferences," Working Papers of BETA 2009-06, Bureau d'Economie Théorique et Appliquée, UDS, Strasbourg.
  6. Maria Demertzis & Andrew Hughes Hallett, 2004. "Rational Ambiguity and Monitoring the Central Bank," Vanderbilt University Department of Economics Working Papers 0404, Vanderbilt University Department of Economics.
  7. Dai, Meixing & Sidiropoulos, Moïse, 2008. "Central bank's conservativeness and transparency," Research in Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(4), pages 179-187, December.

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