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Central bank reform, liberalization and inflation in transition economies--an international perspective

  • Cukierman, Alex
  • Miller, Geoffrey P.
  • Neyapti, Bilin

This Paper develops extensive new indices of legal independence (Central Bank Independence, or CBI) for new central banks in 26 former socialist economies (FSEs). The indices reveal that central bank reform in the FSE during the 1990s has been quite ambitious. In spite of large price shocks, reformers in those countries have chosen to create central banks with levels of legal independence that are substantially higher, on average, than those of developed economies during the 1980s. The evidence in the Paper shows that CBI is unrelated to inflation during the early stages of liberalization. But with sufficiently high and sustained levels of liberalization, and controlling for other variables, legal CBI and inflation are significantly and negatively related. These findings are consistent with the view that even high CBI cannot contain the initial powerful inflationary impact of removing price controls. But once the process of liberalization has gathered sufficient momentum legal independence becomes effective in reducing inflation. The Paper also presents evidence on factors that affect the choice of CBI and it examines the relation between inflation and CBI in a broader sample.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Monetary Economics.

Volume (Year): 49 (2002)
Issue (Month): 2 (March)
Pages: 237-264

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Handle: RePEc:eee:moneco:v:49:y:2002:i:2:p:237-264
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  1. Loungani, Prakash & Sheets, Nathan, 1997. "Central Bank Independence, Inflation, and Growth in Transition Economies," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 29(3), pages 381-99, August.
  2. Alesina, Alberto & Summers, Lawrence H, 1993. "Central Bank Independence and Macroeconomic Performance: Some Comparative Evidence," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 25(2), pages 151-62, May.
  3. Conway, P, 1995. "Currency Proliferation : The Monetary Legacy of the Soviet Union," Princeton Studies in International Economics 197, International Economics Section, Departement of Economics Princeton University,.
  4. Barro, Robert J, 1979. "On the Determination of the Public Debt," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(5), pages 940-71, October.
  5. Eijffinger, S. & De Hann, J., 1995. "The Political Economy of Central Bank Independence," Papers 9587, Tilburg - Center for Economic Research.
  6. S. Eijffinger & M. Van Keulen, 1995. "Central bank independence in another eleven countries," BNL Quarterly Review, Banca Nazionale del Lavoro, vol. 48(192), pages 39-81.
  7. de Melo, Martha & Denizer, Cevdet & Gelb, Alan, 1996. "From plan to market : patterns of transition," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1564, The World Bank.
  8. Alex Cukierman, 1992. "Central Bank Strategy, Credibility, and Independence: Theory and Evidence," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262031981, June.
  9. Roubini, Nouriel & Sachs, Jeffrey D., 1989. "Political and economic determinants of budget deficits in the industrial democracies," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 33(5), pages 903-933, May.
  10. Chris Melliss & Mark Cornelius, 1994. "New currencies in the Former Soviet Union: a recipe for hyperinflation or the path to price stability," Bank of England working papers 26, Bank of England.
  11. Eijffinger, S.C.W., 1993. "Central bank independence in twelve industrial countries," Other publications TiSEM 0401b17a-e2c7-4179-ace9-a, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
  12. Alex Cukierman & Steven Webb, 1995. "Political Influence on the Central Bank- International Evidence," University of Chicago - George G. Stigler Center for Study of Economy and State 114, Chicago - Center for Study of Economy and State.
  13. repec:bil:bilpap:0007 is not listed on IDEAS
  14. Cukierman, Alex & Webb, Steven B & Neyapti, Bilin, 1992. "Measuring the Independence of Central Banks and Its Effect on Policy Outcomes," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 6(3), pages 353-98, September.
  15. Hochreiter, Eduard & Rovelli, Riccardo & Winckler, Georg, 1996. "Central banks and seigniorage: A study of three economies in transition," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(3-5), pages 629-643, April.
  16. Alberto Alesina, 1988. "Macroeconomics and Politics," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1988, Volume 3, pages 13-62 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Nouriel Roubini & Jeffrey Sachs, 1988. "Political and Economic Determinants of Budget Deficits in the IndustrialDemocracies," NBER Working Papers 2682, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Conway, P, 1995. "Currency Proliferation : The Monetary Legacy of the Soviet Union," Princeton Essays in International Economics 197, International Economics Section, Departement of Economics Princeton University,.
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