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Monetary Policy and Asset Prices: More Bad News for 'Benign Neglect'


  • Wolfram Berger
  • Friedrich Kißmer
  • Helmut Wagner


In this paper we explore the optimal policy reaction to boom-bust cycles in asset prices. Bordo and Jeanne (2002a, b) point to the risks of a reactive strategy that only mitigates the consequences of a crisis if and when it occurs. Acting pre-emptively by rigorously counteracting the build-up of the crisis scenario may be superior in welfare terms. We show that even a purely reactive monetary policy must involve an ex ante response to a possible asset price crash. The reason, however, is not the attempt to avoid real and financial disruption but to react optimally to changes in the private sector's expectations. Furthermore, we find that the welfare losses of a reactive strategy increase when forward-looking expectations are taken into account, while the welfare implications of a proactive strategy do not change. Copyright 2007 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Suggested Citation

  • Wolfram Berger & Friedrich Kißmer & Helmut Wagner, 2007. "Monetary Policy and Asset Prices: More Bad News for 'Benign Neglect'," International Finance, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 10(1), pages 1-20, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:intfin:v:10:y:2007:i:1:p:1-20

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    Cited by:

    1. Papadamou, Stephanos & Sidiropoulos, Moïse & Spyromitros, Eleftherios, 2017. "Does central bank independence affect stock market volatility?," Research in International Business and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 855-864.
    2. Wagner, Helmut & Kißmer, Friedrich & Funke, Norbert, 2006. "International Lessons for the Property Price Boom in South Africa," Proceedings of the German Development Economics Conference, Berlin 2006 27, Verein für Socialpolitik, Research Committee Development Economics.
    3. Wolfram Berger & Friedrich Kissmer, 2013. "Monetary Policy and Asset Prices: When Cleaning Up Hits the Zero Lower Bound," Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics (SJES), Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics (SSES), vol. 149(III), pages 291-312, September.
    4. Sofía Bauducco & Aleš Bulir & Martin Èihák, 2011. "Monetary Policy Rules with Financial Instability," Czech Journal of Economics and Finance (Finance a uver), Charles University Prague, Faculty of Social Sciences, vol. 61(6), pages 545-565, December.
    5. Berger, Wolfram & Kißmer, Friedrich, 2013. "Central bank independence and financial stability: A tale of perfect harmony?," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 31(C), pages 109-118.
    6. Helmut Wagner, 2010. "The causes of the recent financial crisis and the role of central banks in avoiding the next one," International Economics and Economic Policy, Springer, vol. 7(1), pages 63-82, May.
    7. Mathias Drehmann & Claudio Borio & Kostas Tsatsaronis, 2011. "Anchoring Countercyclical Capital Buffers: The role of Credit Aggregates," International Journal of Central Banking, International Journal of Central Banking, vol. 7(4), pages 189-240, December.

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