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The Role of the Chairman in Setting Monetary Policy: Individualistic vs. Autocratically Collegial MPCs

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  • Petra Gerlach-Kristen

    (Swiss National Bank and University of Basel)

Abstract

This paper models the role of the Chairman in the decision making of individualistic and autocratically collegial monetary policy committees, assuming that uncertainty about the optimal interest rate causes policymakers’ views to differ and that they are unable to communicate their opinions perfectly. The Chairman’s ability to moderate the discussion and his economic skills—and, in an autocratically collegial committee, the authority arising from his position—impact the path of interest rates and the distribution of votes. Simulations suggest that his influence on the quality of policy itself is limited and that interest rate setting is only slightly worse in an autocratically collegial setup. The Chairman’s main impact is to help build consensus in the committee, which enhances the credibility of monetary policy.

Suggested Citation

  • Petra Gerlach-Kristen, 2008. "The Role of the Chairman in Setting Monetary Policy: Individualistic vs. Autocratically Collegial MPCs," International Journal of Central Banking, International Journal of Central Banking, vol. 4(3), pages 119-143, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:ijc:ijcjou:y:2008:q:3:a:5
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    Cited by:

    1. El-Shagi, Makram & Jung, Alexander, 2015. "Does the Greenspan era provide evidence on leadership in the FOMC?," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 43(C), pages 173-190.
    2. Mikael Apel & Carl Andreas Claussen & Petra Gerlach-Kristen & Petra Lennartsdotter & Øistein Røisland, 2013. "Monetary policy decisions – comparing theory and “inside” information from MPC members," Working Paper 2013/03, Norges Bank.
    3. Farvaque, Etienne & Matsueda, Norimichi & Méon, Pierre-Guillaume, 2009. "How monetary policy committees impact the volatility of policy rates," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 31(4), pages 534-546, December.
    4. Bagus, Philipp & Howden, David, 2016. "Central Bank Balance Sheet Analysis," MPRA Paper 79801, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Emile van Ommeren & Giulia Piccillo, 2019. "The Central Bank Governor and Interest Rate Setting by Committee," CESifo Working Paper Series 7822, CESifo.
    6. Roman Horváth & Katerina Šmídková & Jan Zápal, 2012. "Central Banks' Voting Records and Future Policy," International Journal of Central Banking, International Journal of Central Banking, vol. 8(4), pages 1-19, December.
    7. Hamza Bennani, 2016. "Measuring Monetary Policy Stress for Fed District Representatives," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 63(2), pages 156-176, May.
    8. Horváth Roman & Šmídková Kateřina & Zápal Jan, 2016. "Voting in Central Banks: Theory versus Stylized Facts," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 16(4), pages 1-62, October.
    9. Horváth Roman & Šmídková Kateřina & Zápal Jan, 2016. "Voting in Central Banks: Theory versus Stylized Facts," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 16(4), pages 1-62, October.
    10. Arnab Bhattacharjee & Sean Holly, 2010. "Rational Partisan Theory, Uncertainty, And Spatial Voting: Evidence For The Bank Of England'S Mpc," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 22(2), pages 151-179, July.
    11. Christian Pierdzioch & Jan-Christoph Rülke & Peter Tillmann, 2013. "Using forecasts to uncover the loss function of FOMC members," MAGKS Papers on Economics 201302, Philipps-Universität Marburg, Faculty of Business Administration and Economics, Department of Economics (Volkswirtschaftliche Abteilung).
    12. Michael Ehrmann & Marcel Fratzscher, 2013. "Dispersed communication by central bank committees and the predictability of monetary policy decisions," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 157(1), pages 223-244, October.
    13. Carsten Hefeker & Blandine Zimmer, 2015. "Optimal Conservatism and Collective Monetary Policymaking under Uncertainty," Open Economies Review, Springer, vol. 26(2), pages 259-278, April.
    14. Vidal, Jean-Pierre & Maurin, Vincent, 2012. "Monetary policy deliberations: committee size and voting rules," Working Paper Series 1434, European Central Bank.
    15. Claussen, Carl Andreas & Matsen, Egil & Røisland, Øistein & Torvik, Ragnar, 2012. "Overconfidence, monetary policy committees and chairman dominance," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 81(2), pages 699-711.
    16. Peter Tillmann, 2010. "Monetary Policy Committees and Model Uncertainty," MAGKS Papers on Economics 201021, Philipps-Universität Marburg, Faculty of Business Administration and Economics, Department of Economics (Volkswirtschaftliche Abteilung).
    17. Tillmann, Peter, 2011. "Strategic forecasting on the FOMC," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 547-553, September.
    18. Christopher Spencer, 2014. "Conventional and Unconventional Votes: A Tale of Three Monetary Policy Committees," Discussion Paper Series 2014_11, Department of Economics, Loughborough University, revised Dec 2014.
    19. Mikael Apel & Carl Andreas Claussen & Petra Lennartsdotter & Øistein Røisland, 2015. "Monetary Policy Committees: Comparing Theory and "Inside" Information from MPC Members," International Journal of Central Banking, International Journal of Central Banking, vol. 11(4), pages 47-89, December.
    20. Firrell, Alastair & Reinold, Kate, 2020. "Uncertainty and voting on the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee," Bank of England working papers 898, Bank of England.

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy

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