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How the Bundesbank really conducted monetary policy

Listed author(s):
  • Gerberding, Christina
  • Seitz, Franz
  • Worms, Andreas

Papers estimating the reaction function of the Bundesbank generally find that ist monetary policy from the 1970s to 1998 can well be captured by a standard Taylor rule according to which the central bank responds to the output gap and to deviations of inflation from target, but not to monetary growth. This result is at odds with the Bundesbank´s claim that it followed a strategy of monetary targeting. This paper analyses whether this apparent contradiction is due to (a) the use of ex post data which do not necessarily match policy makers’ real-time information sets and (b) the omission of important explanatory variables. Accordingly, we compile a real-time data set for Germany including the Bundesbank’s own estimates of potential output and use it to reestimate the Bundesbank’s reaction function. We find that the use of real-time data considerably changes the results. Moreover, when adding the change in the output gap as well as deviations of money growth from target to the set of explanatory variables, we find that both variables are highly significant. This suggests that the Bundesbank took its monetary targets seriously, but also responded to deviations of expected inflation and output growth from target

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal The North American Journal of Economics and Finance.

Volume (Year): 16 (2005)
Issue (Month): 3 (December)
Pages: 277-292

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Handle: RePEc:eee:ecofin:v:16:y:2005:i:3:p:277-292
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/620163

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  1. Clausen, Jens R. & Meier, Carsten-Patrick, 2003. "Did the Bundesbank follow a Taylor rule? An analysis based on real-time data," Kiel Working Papers 1180, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
  2. McCallum, B.T. & Nelson, E., 1998. "Nominal Income Targeting in an Open-Economy Optimizing Model," Papers 644, Stockholm - International Economic Studies.
  3. Orphanides, Athanasios & Williams, John C., 2004. "The decline of activist stabilization policy: Natural rate misperceptions, learning, and expectations," CFS Working Paper Series 2004/24, Center for Financial Studies (CFS).
  4. Richard Clarida & Jordi Gali & Mark Gertler, 1997. "Monetary Policy Rules in Practice: Some International Evidence," NBER Working Papers 6254, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Stephan Sauer & Jan-Egbert Sturm, 2003. "Using Taylor Rules to Understand ECB Monetary Policy," CESifo Working Paper Series 1110, CESifo Group Munich.
  6. Jens Richard Clausen & Carsten-Patrick Meier, 2005. "Did the Bundesbank Follow a Taylor Rule? An Analysis Based on Real-Time Data," Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics (SJES), Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics (SSES), vol. 141(II), pages 213-246, June.
  7. Athanasios Orphanides, 2003. "Historical monetary policy analysis and the Taylor rule," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2003-36, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  8. Carl E. Walsh, 2003. "Implications of a changing economic structure for the strategy of monetary policy," Proceedings - Economic Policy Symposium - Jackson Hole, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, pages 297-348.
  9. Klaus Masuch & Sergio Nicoletti-Altimari & Massimo Rostagno & Huw Pill, 2003. "The role of money in monetary policymaking," BIS Papers chapters, in: Bank for International Settlements (ed.), Monetary policy in a changing environment, volume 19, pages 158-191 Bank for International Settlements.
  10. McCallum, Bennett T, 1985. "On Consequences and Criticisms of Monetary Targeting," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 17(4), pages 570-597, November.
  11. Athanasios Orphanides, 2001. "Monetary Policy Rules Based on Real-Time Data," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(4), pages 964-985, September.
  12. Clarida, R. & Gertler, M., 1996. "How the Bundesbank Conducts Monetary Policy," Working Papers 96-14, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  13. Orphanides, Athanasios, 2000. "The quest for prosperity without inflation," Working Paper Series 0015, European Central Bank.
  14. English William B. & Nelson William R. & Sack Brian P., 2003. "Interpreting the Significance of the Lagged Interest Rate in Estimated Monetary Policy Rules," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 3(1), pages 1-18, April.
  15. Gerberding, Christina & Worms, Andreas & Seitz, Franz, 2004. "How the Bundesbank really conducted monetary policy: An analysis based on real-time data," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2004,25, Deutsche Bundesbank, Research Centre.
  16. Jon Faust & John H. Rogers & Jonathan H. Wright, 2001. "An empirical comparison of Bundesbank and ECB monetary policy rules," International Finance Discussion Papers 705, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  17. Christina Gerberding & Miriam Kaatz & Franz Seitz & Andreas Worms, 2005. "European Data Watch: A Real-Time Data Set for German Macroeconomic Variables," Schmollers Jahrbuch : Journal of Applied Social Science Studies / Zeitschrift für Wirtschafts- und Sozialwissenschaften, Duncker & Humblot, Berlin, vol. 125(2), pages 337-346.
  18. Issing, Otmar, 1997. "Monetary targeting in Germany: The stability of monetary policy and of the monetary system," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 67-79, June.
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