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A Post-Keynesian View of Central Bank Independence, Policy Targets, and the Rules-versus-Discretion Debate

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  • L. Randall Wray

Abstract

This paper addresses three issues surrounding monetary policy formation: policy independence, choice of operating targets, and rules versus discretion. According to the New Monetary Consensus, the central bank needs policy independence to build credibility; the operating target is the overnight interbank lending rate, and the ultimate goal is price stability. This paper provides an alternative view, arguing that an effective central bank cannot be independent as conventionally defined, where effectiveness is indicated by ability to hit an overnight nominal interest rate target. Discretionary policy is rejected, as are conventional views of the central bank's ability to achieve traditional goals such as robust growth, low inflation, and high employment. Thus, the paper returns to Keynes's call for low interest rates and euthanasia of the rentier.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Levy Economics Institute, The in its series Economics Working Paper Archive with number wp_510.

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Date of creation: Aug 2007
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Handle: RePEc:lev:wrkpap:wp_510

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  1. Marc Lavoie, 2002. "Interest parity, risk premia, and Post Keynesian analysis," Journal of Post Keynesian Economics, M.E. Sharpe, Inc., vol. 25(2), pages 237-249, December.
  2. Cottrell, Allin, 1994. "Keynes and the Keynesians on the Fisher Effect," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 41(4), pages 416-33, November.
  3. Dimitri B. Papadimitriou & L. Randall Wray, . "Targeting Inflation, The Effects of Monetary Policy on the CPI and Its Housing Component," Economics Public Policy Brief Archive ppb_27, Levy Economics Institute, The.
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Cited by:
  1. Hein, Eckhard & Schoder, Christian, 2009. "Interest rates, distribution and capital accumulation – A Post-Kaleckian perspective on the US and Germany," MPRA Paper 18223, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  2. Emiliano Brancaccio & Giuseppe Fontana, 2013. "'Solvency rule' versus 'Taylor rule': an alternative interpretation of the relation between monetary policy and the economic crisis," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 37(1), pages 17-33.
  3. Hiroshi Nishi, 2012. "Varieties of Economic Growth Regimes, Types of Macroeconomic Policies, and Policy Regime: A Post-Keynesian Analysis," Discussion papers e-12-008, Graduate School of Economics Project Center, Kyoto University.
  4. Angel Asensio, 2009. "Between the cup and the lip," Working Papers halshs-00496911, HAL.
  5. Mark Setterfield, 2013. "Using Interest Rates as the Instrument of Monetary Policy: Beware Real effects, Positive Feedbacks, and Discontinuities," Working Papers 1320, Trinity College, Department of Economics.
  6. Jairo Parada Corrales & Cristina Albor Cepeda, 2011. "La mitología del banco central independiente," Revista de Economía Institucional, Universidad Externado de Colombia - Facultad de Economía, vol. 13(24), pages 465-472, January-J.

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