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Too Many Cooks? Committees in Monetary Policy

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  • Helge Berger

    ()
    (Freie Universität Berlin, Economics Department, Berlin, Germany)

  • Volker Nitsch

    ()
    (ETH Zurich, KOF Swiss Economic Institute, Zurich, Switzerland)

Abstract

How many people should decide about monetary policy? In this paper, we take an empirical perspective on this issue, analyzing the relationship between the number of monetary policy decision-makers and monetary policy outcomes. Using a new data set that characterizes Monetary Policy Committees (MPCs) in more than 30 countries from 1960 through 2000, we find a U-shaped relation between the membership size of MPCs and inflation; our results suggest that the lowest level of inflation is reached at MPCs with about seven to ten members. Similar results are obtained for other measures, such as inflation variability and output growth. We also find that MPC size influences the success of monetary targeting regimes. In contrast, there is no evidence that either turnover rates of MPC members or the membership composition of MPCs affect economic outcomes.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by KOF Swiss Economic Institute, ETH Zurich in its series KOF Working papers with number 08-195.

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Length: 28 pages
Date of creation: Apr 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:kof:wpskof:08-195

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Keywords: central bank design; monetary policy committee; central bank board; central bank council; governance; inflation;

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References

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  1. Helge Berger & Volker Nitsch & Tonny Lybek, 2007. "Central Bank Boards around the World: Why does Membership Size Differ?," CESifo Working Paper Series 1897, CESifo Group Munich.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Potrafke, Niklas, 2013. "Minority positions in the German Council of Economic Experts: A political economic analysis," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 31(C), pages 180-187.
  2. Harald Badinger & Volker Nitsch, 2011. "National Representation in Multinational Institutions: The Case of the European Central Bank," CESifo Working Paper Series 3573, CESifo Group Munich.
  3. Helge Berger & Volker Nitsch & Tonny Lybek, 2007. "Central Bank Boards around the World: Why does Membership Size Differ?," CESifo Working Paper Series 1897, CESifo Group Munich.
  4. Helge Berger & Tonny Lybek & Volker Nitsch, 2006. "Central Bank Boards Around the World," IMF Working Papers 06/281, International Monetary Fund.
  5. Esteban Colla De Robertis & Last: Colla De Robertis, 2010. "Monetary Committee Size and Special Interest Influence," Documentos de Investigación - Research Papers 2, Centro de Estudios Monetarios Latinoamericanos, CEMLA.
  6. Daniel Seidmann, 2011. "A theory of voting patterns and performance in private and public committees," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer, vol. 36(1), pages 49-74, January.
  7. Badinger, Harald & Nitsch, Volker, 2014. "National representation in supranational institutions: The case of the European Central Bank," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 19-33.
  8. Etienne Farvaque & Hakim Hammadou & Piotr Stanek, 2011. "Selecting Your Inflation Targeters: Background and Performance of Monetary Policy Committee Members," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 12(2), pages 223-238, 05.

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