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A forward-looking monetary policy reaction function: continuity and change

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  • Stephen K. McNees

Abstract

This study suggests that U.S. monetary policy has been influenced by forecasts of and past experience with three broad factors: inflation, economic activity, and the monetary aggregates. The influence of each factor has varied, however, within this common theme. In the past 22 years at least two specific changes have occurred: the October 1979 shift to greater emphasis on a narrow measure of money and a shift in the early 1980s from M1 targeting to M2. ; The author models monetary policy econometrically, testing the influence of numerous factors on monetary policy and investigating whether a formal model can capture variations in these factors and in the policy instrument. The study also tests the influence of a number of other factors that are often thought to have an impact on monetary policy, such as measufes Of fiscal policy, exchange rates, and stock prices, as well as the President and Fed Chairman and the political party in power. The results indicate that monetary policy does not react systematically to these other factors.

Suggested Citation

  • Stephen K. McNees, 1992. "A forward-looking monetary policy reaction function: continuity and change," New England Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, issue Nov, pages 3-13.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedbne:y:1992:i:nov:p:3-13
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    File URL: http://www.bostonfed.org/economic/neer/neer1992/neer692a.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Fair, Ray C, 1978. "The Sensitivity of Fiscal Policy Effects to Assumptions about the Behavior of the Federal Reserve," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(5), pages 1165-1179, September.
    2. Barth, James & Sickles, Robin & Wiest, Philip, 1982. "Assessing the impact of varying economic conditions on federal reserve behavior," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 4(1), pages 47-70.
    3. Abrams, Richard K & Froyen, Richard & Waud, Roger N, 1980. "Monetary Policy Reaction Functions, Consistent Expectations, and the Burns Era," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 12(1), pages 30-42, February.
    4. Dwyer, Gerald P, Jr, 1985. "Federal Deficits, Interest Rates, and Monetary Policy," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 17(4), pages 655-681, November.
    5. Glenn T. Potts & Dudley G. Luckett, 1978. "Policy Objectives of the Federal Reserve System," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 92(3), pages 525-534.
    6. Fuhrer, Jeff & Moore, George, 1992. "Monetary policy rules and the indicator properties of asset prices," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 303-336, April.
    7. Froyen, Richard T., 1974. "A test of the endogeneity of monetary policy," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 2(2), pages 175-188, July.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. William T. Gavin & Finn E. Kydland, 2000. "The nominal facts and the October 1979 policy change," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Nov, pages 39-61.
    2. Charles L. Evans & Kenneth N. Kuttner, 1998. "Can VAR's describe monetary policy?," Working Paper Series WP-98-19, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
    3. V. Anton Muscatelli & Patrizio Tirelli & Carmine Trecroci, 1998. "Institutional Change, Inflation Targeting and the Stability of Interest Rate Reaction Functions," Working Papers 9815, Business School - Economics, University of Glasgow, revised Aug 1998.
    4. Fair, Ray C., 2012. "Has macro progressed?," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 34(1), pages 2-10.
    5. Peek, Joe & Rosengren, Eric S & Tootell, Geoffrey M B, 2003. " Identifying the Macroeconomic Effect of Loan Supply Shocks," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 35(6), pages 931-946, December.
    6. Rudebusch, Glenn D., 2002. "Term structure evidence on interest rate smoothing and monetary policy inertia," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(6), pages 1161-1187, September.
    7. Croushore, Dean & Stark, Tom, 2001. "A real-time data set for macroeconomists," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 105(1), pages 111-130, November.
    8. Menzie Chinn & William Maloney, 1998. "Financial and Capital Account Liberalization in the Pacific Basin: Korea and Taiwan During the 1980's," International Economic Journal, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 12(1), pages 53-74.
    9. Florens, C. & Jondeau, E. & Le Bihan, H., 2001. "Assessing GMM Estimates of the Federal Reserve Reaction Function," Working papers 83, Banque de France.
    10. Tootell, Geoffrey M. B., 1999. "Whose monetary policy is it anyway?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 217-235, February.
    11. Jiri Podpiera, 2006. "The Role of Policy Rule Misspecification in Monetary Policy Inertia Debate," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp315, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economics Institute, Prague.
    12. Peek, Joe & Rosengren, Eric S. & Tootell, Geoffrey M. B., 2003. "Does the federal reserve possess an exploitable informational advantage?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(4), pages 817-839, May.
    13. Muscatelli, V Anton & Tirelli, Patrizio & Trecroci, Carmine, 2002. "Does Institutional Change Really Matter? Inflation Targets, Central Bank Reform and Interest Rate Policy in the OECD Countries," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 70(4), pages 487-527, Special I.
    14. Choi, Woon Gyu, 1999. "Estimating the Discount Rate Policy Reaction Function of the Monetary Authority," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 14(4), pages 379-401, July-Aug..
    15. Vanderhart, Peter G., 2000. "The Federal Reserve's Reaction Function under Greenspan: An Ordinal Probit Analysis," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 22(4), pages 631-644, October.
    16. Ray Fair, 2009. "Has Macro Progressed?," Yale School of Management Working Papers amz2409, Yale School of Management.
    17. Goodhart Charles A.E., 2005. "The Monetary Policy Committee's Reaction Function: An Exercise in Estimation," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 5(1), pages 1-42, August.

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    Keywords

    Monetary policy;

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