Reflections on the Current Fashion For Central Bank Independence
AbstractThis paper challenges the time-inconsistency case for central bank independence. It argues that the time-inconsistency literature not only seriously confuses the substance of the rules versus discretion debate, but also posits an implausible view of monetary policy. Most worrisome, the inflationary bias featured prominently in the time-inconsistency literature has encouraged the development of a dangerously one-sided approach to central bank independence that entirely ignores the potential risks involved in maximizing central bankers' latitude for discretion. The analysis shows that a more balanced and symmetric approach to central bank independence is urgently warranted. The views of Maynard Keynes and Milton Friedman are shown to shed some illuminating and disconcerting light on a fashionable free-lunch promise that is based on rather shallow theoretical foundations.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by EconWPA in its series Macroeconomics with number 0108004.
Length: 38 pages
Date of creation: 09 Aug 2001
Date of revision:
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time inconsistency; central bank independence; monetary policy; rules versus discretion; credibility;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- E50 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - General
- E58 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Central Banks and Their Policies
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2001-08-15 (All new papers)
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