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Is There a Case for Formal Inflation Targeting in Sub-Saharan Africa?

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  • James Heintz
  • Léonce Ndikumana

Abstract

This working paper examines the question of whether inflation targeting monetary policy is an appropriate framework for sub-Saharan African countries. The paper presents an overview of inflation targeting, reviews the justification for the regime, and summarizes some major critiques. Monetary policy responses to inflation depend on the source of inflationary pressures. Therefore, the determinants of inflation in African countries areinvestigated, using dynamic panel data, and the implications for inflation targeting are discussed. These issues are examined in greater detail for the two African countries which have formally adopted inflation targeting, South Africa and Ghana. The analysis is placed in the context of the global economic crisis. The paper concludes with a discussion of alternative approaches to monetary policies and the institutional constraints that would need to be addressed to allow central banks to play a stronger developmental role in sub-Saharan African countries.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Political Economy Research Institute, University of Massachusetts at Amherst in its series Working Papers with number wp218.

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Date of creation: 2010
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Handle: RePEc:uma:periwp:wp218

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Keywords: Sub-Saharan Africa; inflation; development; monetary policy; finance;

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References

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  1. Goncalves, Carlos Eduardo S. & Salles, Joao M., 2008. "Inflation targeting in emerging economies: What do the data say?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 85(1-2), pages 312-318, February.
  2. Joshua Aizenman & Michael Hutchison & Ilan Noy, 2008. "Inflation Targeting and Real Exchange Rates in Emerging Markets," NBER Working Papers 14561, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Oscar Landerretche & Vittorio Corbo & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel, 2001. "Does Inflation Targeting Make a Difference," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 106, Central Bank of Chile.
  4. Janine Aron & John Muellbauer, 2006. "Review of Monetary Policy in South Africa since 1994," CSAE Working Paper Series 2006-07, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
  5. Bruno, Michael & Easterly, William, 1998. "Inflation crises and long-run growth," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(1), pages 3-26, February.
  6. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1977. "Rules Rather Than Discretion: The Inconsistency of Optimal Plans," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 473-91, June.
  7. Burdekin, Richard C.K. & Denzau, Arthur T. & Keil, Manfred W. & Sitthiyot, Thitithep & Willett, Thomas D., 2004. "When does inflation hurt economic growth? Different nonlinearities for different economies," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 519-532, September.
  8. Thandika Mkandawire, 1999. "The political economy of financial reform in Africa," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 11(3), pages 321-342.
  9. Régis Barnichon & Shanaka J. Peiris, 2008. "Sources of Inflation in Sub-Saharan Africa," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 17(5), pages 729-746, November.
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  16. repec:nbr:nberwo:12876 is not listed on IDEAS
  17. Luis Miguel Galindo & Jaime Ros, 2008. "Alternatives to inflation targeting in Mexico," International Review of Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 22(2), pages 201-214.
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  22. Loening, Josef L. & Durevall, Dick & Birru, Yohannes A., 2009. "Inflation dynamics and food prices in an agricultural economy : the case of Ethiopia," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4969, The World Bank.
  23. Jannie Rossouw & Vishnu Padayachee, 2009. "Measuring Inflation Credibility: Results Of A First Representative South African Sample," South African Journal of Economics, Economic Society of South Africa, vol. 77(2), pages 314-331, 06.
  24. Gerald Epstein, 2007. "Central banks as agents of employment creation," Working Papers 38, United Nations, Department of Economics and Social Affairs.
  25. Kevin Nell, 2004. "The structuralist theory of imported inflation: an application to South Africa," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 36(13), pages 1431-1444.
  26. Arellano, Manuel & Bond, Stephen, 1991. "Some Tests of Specification for Panel Data: Monte Carlo Evidence and an Application to Employment Equations," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 58(2), pages 277-97, April.
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  28. Nelson Barbosa-Filho, 2008. "Inflation targeting in Brazil: 1999-2006," International Review of Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 22(2), pages 187-200.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Senbeta, Sisay, 2011. "How applicable are the new keynesian DSGE models to a typical low-income economy?," MPRA Paper 30931, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  2. Zuzana Brixiová & Léonce Ndikumana, 2011. "Supporting Africa’s Post-Crisis Growth: The Role of Macroeconomic Policies," Working Papers wp254, Political Economy Research Institute, University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
  3. Oluwatosin Adeniyi & Festus O. Egwaikhide, 2013. "Saving-Investment Nexus In Developing Countries: Does Financial Development Matter?," Journal of Economic Development, Chung-Ang Unviersity, Department of Economics, vol. 38(2), pages 119-140, June.
  4. Roseline Nyakerario Misati & Esman Morekwa Nyamongo & Lucas Kamau Njoroge & Sheila Kaminchia, 2012. "Feasibility of inflation targeting in an emerging market: evidence from Kenya," Journal of Financial Economic Policy, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 4(2), pages 146-159, June.

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