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A U.S. Financial Conditions Index

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  • Andrew Swiston
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    Abstract

    This paper uses vector autoregressions and impulse-response functions to construct a U.S. financial conditions index (FCI). Credit availability—proxied by survey results on lending standards—is an important driver of the business cycle, accounting for over 20 percent of the typical contribution of financial factors to growth. A net tightening in lending standards of 20 percentage points reduces economic activity by ¾ percent after one year and 1¼ percent after two years. Much of the impact of monetary policy on the economy also works through its effects on credit supply, which is evidence supporting the existence of a credit channel of monetary policy. Shocks to corporate bond yields, equity prices, and real exchange rates also contribute to fluctuations in the FCI. This FCI is an accurate predictor of real GDP growth, anticipating turning points in activity with a lead time of six to nine months. 15B

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by International Monetary Fund in its series IMF Working Papers with number 08/161.

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    Length: 35
    Date of creation: 01 Jun 2008
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:08/161

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    Related research

    Keywords: Economic conditions; standards; monetary policy; inflation; long-term interest rates; monetary fund; monetary economics; monetary transmission; monetary conditions; transmission of monetary policy; aggregate demand; central bank; contractionary monetary policy; long- term interest rates; monetary policy decisions; monetary policy regime; monetary policy decision;

    References

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    1. Ben S. Bernanke & Mark Gertler, 1995. "Inside the Black Box: The Credit Channel of Monetary Policy Transmission," NBER Working Papers 5146, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Mark Gertler & Cara S. Lown, 2000. "The Information in the High Yield Bond Spread for the Business Cycle: Evidence and Some Implications," NBER Working Papers 7549, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Christiano, Lawrence J & Eichenbaum, Martin & Evans, Charles, 1996. "The Effects of Monetary Policy Shocks: Evidence from the Flow of Funds," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 78(1), pages 16-34, February.
    4. Eika, K.H. & Ericsson, N.R. & Nymoen, R., 1996. "Hazards in Implementing a Monetary Conditions Index," Memorandum 32/1996, Oslo University, Department of Economics.
    5. Tamim Bayoumi & Ola Melander, 2008. "Credit Matters," IMF Working Papers 08/169, International Monetary Fund.
    6. Ashoka Mody & Mark P. Taylor, 2003. "The High-Yield Spread as a Predictor of Real Economic Activity: Evidence of a Financial Accelerator for the United States," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 50(3), pages 3.
    7. Ashcraft, Adam B. & Campello, Murillo, 2007. "Firm balance sheets and monetary policy transmission," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(6), pages 1515-1528, September.
    8. Strongin, Steven, 1995. "The identification of monetary policy disturbances explaining the liquidity puzzle," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 463-497, June.
    9. Gambacorta, Leonardo & Mistrulli, Paolo Emilio, 2004. "Does bank capital affect lending behavior?," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 13(4), pages 436-457, October.
    10. Stiglitz, Joseph E & Weiss, Andrew, 1981. "Credit Rationing in Markets with Imperfect Information," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(3), pages 393-410, June.
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    Cited by:
    1. Angelopoulou, Eleni & Balfoussia, Hiona & Gibson, Heather D., 2014. "Building a financial conditions index for the euro area and selected euro area countries: What does it tell us about the crisis?," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 392-403.
    2. A. Hakan Kara & Pinar Ozlu & Deren Unalmis, 2012. "Financial Conditions Indices for the Turkish Economy," CBT Research Notes in Economics 1231, Research and Monetary Policy Department, Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey.
    3. de Bondt, Gabe & Maddaloni, Angela & Peydró, José-Luis & Scopel, Silvia, 2010. "The euro area Bank Lending Survey matters: empirical evidence for credit and output growth," Working Paper Series 1160, European Central Bank.
    4. Abdul Majid, Muhamed Zulkhibri, 2010. "Measuring Monetary Conditions in A Small Open Economy: The Case of Malaysia," MPRA Paper 29154, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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