The Missing Transmission Mechanism in the Monetary Explanation of the Great Depression
AbstractThis paper examines an important gap in the monetary explanation of the Great Depression: the lack of a well-articulated and documented transmission mechanism of monetary shocks to the real economy. It begins by reviewing the challenge to Friedman and Schwartz’s monetary explanation provided by the decline in nominal interest rates in the early 1930s. We show that the monetary explanation requires not just that there were expectations of deflation, but that those expectations were the result of monetary contraction. Using a detailed analysis of Business Week magazine, we find evidence that monetary contraction and Federal Reserve policy contributed to expectations of deflation during the central years of the downturn. This suggests that monetary shocks may have depressed spending and output in part by raising real interest rates.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 18746.
Date of creation: Jan 2013
Date of revision:
Note: DAE EFG ME
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Other versions of this item:
- Christina D. Romer & David H. Romer, 2013. "The Missing Transmission Mechanism in the Monetary Explanation of the Great Depression," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 103(3), pages 66-72, May.
- E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
- E58 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Central Banks and Their Policies
- N12 - Economic History - - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics; Industrial Structure; Growth; Fluctuations - - - U.S.; Canada: 1913-
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2013-02-03 (All new papers)
- NEP-CBA-2013-02-03 (Central Banking)
- NEP-MAC-2013-02-03 (Macroeconomics)
- NEP-MON-2013-02-03 (Monetary Economics)
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