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How Experts Decide: Preferences or Private Assessments on a Monetary Policy Committee?

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Author Info

  • Stephen Hansen
  • Carlos Velasco Rivera
  • Michael McMahon

Abstract

Using voting data from the Bank of England, we show that different individual assessments of the economy strongly influence votes after controlling for individual policy preferences. We estimate that internal members form more precise assessments than externals and are also more hawkish, though preference differences are very small if members vote strategically. Counterfactual analysis shows that committees add value through aggregating private assessments, but that gains to larger committees taper off quickly beyond five members. There is no evidence that externals add value through preference moderation. Since their assessments also have lower precision, mixed committees may not be optimal.

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File URL: http://cama.crawford.anu.edu.au/pdf/working-papers/2013/192013.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University in its series CAMA Working Papers with number 2013-19.

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Length: 43 pages
Date of creation: Apr 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:een:camaaa:2013-19

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Keywords: Committees; Monetary policy;

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References

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  1. Clare Lombardelli & James Proudman & James Talbot, 2005. "Committees Versus Individuals: An Experimental Analysis of Monetary Policy Decision-Making," International Journal of Central Banking, International Journal of Central Banking, vol. 1(1), May.
  2. Timothy Besley & Neil Meads & Paolo Surico, 2008. "Insiders versus outsiders in monetary policymaking," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 33743, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  3. Francisco Ruge-Murcia & Alessandro Riboni, 2008. "Monetary Policy by Committee: Consensus, Chairman Dominance or Simple Majority?," 2008 Meeting Papers 142, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  4. Mihov, Ilian & Sibert, Anne, 2006. "Credibility and Flexibility with Independent Monetary Policy Committees," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 38(1), pages 23-46, February.
  5. Bhattacharjee, A. & Holly, S., 2005. "Inflation Targeting, Committee Decision Making and Uncertainty: The case of the Bank of England’s MPC," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 0530, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
  6. Kiel, Alexandra & Gerling, Kerstin & Schulte, Elisabeth & Grüner, Hans Peter, 2003. "Information acquisition and decision making in committees: a survey," Working Paper Series 0256, European Central Bank.
  7. Anne Sibert, 2003. "Monetary Policy Committees: Individual and Collective Reputations," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 70(3), pages 649-665, 07.
  8. Matias Iaryczower & Matthew Shum, 2012. "The Value of Information in the Court: Get It Right, Keep It Tight," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(1), pages 202-37, February.
  9. Christopher Spencer, 2006. "The Dissent Voting Behaviour of Bank of England MPC Members," School of Economics Discussion Papers 0306, School of Economics, University of Surrey.
  10. Mark Harris & Paul Levine & Christopher Spencer, 2011. "A decade of dissent: explaining the dissent voting behavior of Bank of England MPC members," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 146(3), pages 413-442, March.
  11. Orphanides, Athanasios, 2003. "Monetary policy evaluation with noisy information," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(3), pages 605-631, April.
  12. Blinder, Alan S., 2007. "Monetary policy by committee: Why and how?," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 23(1), pages 106-123, March.
  13. Anne Sibert, 2003. "Monetary Policy Committees: Individual and Collective Reputations," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 70(3), pages 649-665.
  14. Blinder, Alan S & Morgan, John, 2005. "Are Two Heads Better than One? Monetary Policy by Committee," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 37(5), pages 789-811, October.
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Cited by:
  1. Stephen Hansen & Michael McMahon, 2013. "Estimating Bayesian Decision Problems with Heterogeneous Priors," CAMA Working Papers 2013-18, Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.
  2. Stephen Eliot Hansen & Michael McMahon & Andrea Prat, 2014. "Transparency and deliberation within the FOMC: A computational linguistics approach," Economics Working Papers 1425, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
  3. repec:cge:warwcg:126 is not listed on IDEAS
  4. repec:cge:warwcg:135 is not listed on IDEAS

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