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Inflation, Central Bank Independence, and the Legal System

  • Bernd Hayo
  • Stefan Voigt

We argue that a higher degree of de facto independence of the legal system from other government branches as well as strong public trust in the working of the legal system may reduce the average inflation rate of countries through two channels: by lowering transaction costs in the economy and by strengthening de facto central bank independence. In the empirical section of the paper, we present evidence in favour of both channels after controlling for other influences in a sample containing both developed and less-developed countries.

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Article provided by Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen in its journal Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics.

Volume (Year): 164 (2008)
Issue (Month): 4 (December)
Pages: 751-777

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Handle: RePEc:mhr:jinste:urn:sici:0932-4569(200812)164:4_751:icbiat_2.0.tx_2-l
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  1. Cukierman, A. & Webb, S., 1994. "Political Influence on the Central Bank : International Evidence," Discussion Paper 1994-100, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  2. Hayo, Bernd & Voigt, Stefan, 2007. "Explaining de facto judicial independence," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 269-290, September.
  3. Philip Keefer, 2001. "Politics and the Determinants of Banking Crises: the Effects of Political Checks and Balances," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 119, Central Bank of Chile.
  4. Svensson, Lars E O, 1996. "Inflation Forecast Targeting: Implementing and Monitoring Inflation Targets," CEPR Discussion Papers 1511, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Hansen, Bruce E., 1992. "Testing for parameter instability in linear models," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 14(4), pages 517-533, August.
  6. Andreas Freytag, 2001. "Does central bank independence reflect monetary commitment properly? Methodical considerations," BNL Quarterly Review, Banca Nazionale del Lavoro, vol. 54(217), pages 181-208.
  7. White, Halbert, 1980. "A Heteroskedasticity-Consistent Covariance Matrix Estimator and a Direct Test for Heteroskedasticity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(4), pages 817-38, May.
  8. Hayo, Bernd, 1998. "Inflation culture, central bank independence and price stability," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 241-263, May.
  9. 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.
  10. Berger, Helge & de Haan, Jakob & Eijffinger, Sylvester C W, 2001. " Central Bank Independence: An Update of Theory and Evidence," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 15(1), pages 3-40, February.
  11. Sturm, Jan-Egbert & Haan, Jakob de, 2001. "Inflation in developing countries: does Central Bank independence matter?," CCSO Working Papers 200101, University of Groningen, CCSO Centre for Economic Research.
  12. Guy Debelle & Stanley Fischer, 1994. "How independent should a central bank be?," Working Papers in Applied Economic Theory 94-05, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  13. Sergio Clavijo, 2000. "Central Banking and Macroeconomic Coordination: The Case of Colombia," BORRADORES DE ECONOMIA 002113, BANCO DE LA REPÚBLICA.
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  15. Bernd Hayo & Carsten Hefeker, 2001. "Do We Really Need Central Bank Independence? A Critical Re- examination," Macroeconomics 0103006, EconWPA.
  16. Lars P. Feld & Stefan Voigt, 2003. "Economic Growth and Judicial Independence: Cross Country Evidence Using a New Set of Indicators," CESifo Working Paper Series 906, CESifo Group Munich.
  17. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1977. "Rules Rather Than Discretion: The Inconsistency of Optimal Plans," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 473-91, June.
  18. David Romer, 1991. "Openness and Inflation: Theory and Evidence," NBER Working Papers 3936, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Forder, James, 1998. "The case for an independent European central bank: A reassessment of evidence and sources," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 14(1), pages 53-71, February.
  20. Sergio Clavijo, . "Central Banking and Macroeconomic Coordination: The Case of Colombia," Borradores de Economia 159, Banco de la Republica de Colombia.
  21. Moser, Peter, 1999. "Checks and balances, and the supply of central bank independence," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 43(8), pages 1569-1593, August.
  22. Rogoff, Kenneth, 1985. "The Optimal Degree of Commitment to an Intermediate Monetary Target," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 100(4), pages 1169-89, November.
  23. W. J. Henisz, 2000. "The Institutional Environment for Economic Growth," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 12(1), pages 1-31, 03.
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