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Credit Booms Gone Bust: Monetary Policy, Leverage Cycles, and Financial Crises, 1870-2008

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  • Moritz Schularick
  • Alan M. Taylor

Abstract

The financial crisis has refocused attention on money and credit fluctuations, financial crises, and policy responses. We study the behavior of money, credit, and macroeconomic indicators over the long run based on a new historical dataset for 14 countries over the years 1870-2008. Total credit has increased strongly relative to output and money in the second half of the twentieth century. Monetary policy responses to financial crises have also been more aggressive, but the output costs of crises have remained large. Credit growth is a powerful predictor of financial crises, suggesting that policymakers ignore credit at their peril. (JEL E32, E44, E52, G01, N10, N20)

Suggested Citation

  • Moritz Schularick & Alan M. Taylor, 2012. "Credit Booms Gone Bust: Monetary Policy, Leverage Cycles, and Financial Crises, 1870-2008," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(2), pages 1029-1061, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:102:y:2012:i:2:p:1029-61
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E44 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
    • E51 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Money Supply; Credit; Money Multipliers
    • E58 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Central Banks and Their Policies
    • G01 - Financial Economics - - General - - - Financial Crises
    • G20 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - General
    • N10 - Economic History - - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics; Industrial Structure; Growth; Fluctuations - - - General, International, or Comparative
    • N20 - Economic History - - Financial Markets and Institutions - - - General, International, or Comparative

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