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Staff, Functions, and Staff Costs at Central Banks: an International Comparison with a Labor- Demand Model

  • Jorge E. Galán Camacho
  • Miguel Sarmiento Paipilla

    (Banco de la República (Colombia))

During the period 2000-2004 central banks sustained a generalized reduction in their staff, which was accompanied, in most cases, with significant increases in staff costs. This could obey to an enhanced interest of central banks in focusing on their core functions. In fact, central banks have changed the ways they perform their operative functions (e.g. currency operations, payment systems operation, printing notes, etc.) through different strategies aimed at gathering the participation of third parties. These strategies differ according to the relationship that central banks have with the financial sector and the government, as well as to their historical tradition and modernization trend. To explain the effect of these changes on the staff, we estimated a short-term labor demand function for 66 central banks using a panel data model with random effects. Results indicate that central banks’ labor demand is strongly determined by the country’s population, economic development level and changes in operative functions, as well as by staff costs. In addition, we found a low employment-wage elasticity suggesting the presence of a flexible budgetary constrain in central banks.

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Article provided by Centro de Estudios Monetarios Latinoamericanos in its journal Money Affairs.

Volume (Year): XX (2007)
Issue (Month): 2 (July-December)
Pages: 131-179

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Handle: RePEc:cml:moneya:v:xx:y:2007:i:2:p:131-179
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  1. René Lalonde & Zhenhua Zhu & Frédérick Demers, 2003. "Forecasting and Analyzing World Commodity Prices," Working Papers 03-24, Bank of Canada.
  2. Eduardo Borensztein & Carmen M. Reinhart, 1994. "The Macroeconomic Determinants of Commodity Prices," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 41(2), pages 236-261, June.
  3. Carmine Di Noia & Giorgio Di Giorgio, 1999. "Should Banking Supervision and Monetary Policy Tasks Be Given to Different Agencies," Center for Financial Institutions Working Papers 00-11, Wharton School Center for Financial Institutions, University of Pennsylvania.
  4. James Bohn & Diana Hancock & Paul Bauer, 2001. "Estimates of scale and cost efficiency for Federal Reserve currency operations," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, issue Q IV, pages 2-26.
  5. Nout Wellink & Bryan Chapple & Philipp Maier, 2002. "The role of national central banks within the European System of Central Banks: The example of De Nederlandsche Bank," MEB Series (discontinued) 2002-13, Netherlands Central Bank, Monetary and Economic Policy Department.
  6. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521818551 is not listed on IDEAS
  7. Joe Peek & Eric S. Rosengren & Geoffrey M. B. Tootell, 1999. "Is Bank Supervision Central To Central Banking?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 114(2), pages 629-653, May.
  8. Saikkonen, Pentti, 1991. "Asymptotically Efficient Estimation of Cointegration Regressions," Econometric Theory, Cambridge University Press, vol. 7(01), pages 1-21, March.
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