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Composite indicators for monetary analysis

  • Andrea Nobili


    (Bank of Italy)

The prominent role assigned to money by the ECB has been the subject of an intense debate because of the declining predictive power of the monetary aggregate M3 for inflation in recent years. This paper reassesses the information content of monetary analysis for future inflation using dynamic factors extracted from a new and richer cross-section of data including the monetary aggregate M3, its components and counterparts, and a detailed breakdown of deposits and loans at sectoral level. Weighting monetary and credit variables according to their signal to noise ratio allows us to downplay those that in recent times contributed significantly to the deterioration of the information content of the M3. Factor-model based inflation forecasts turn out to be more accurate than those produced by traditional competitor models at the relevant policy horizon of six-quarters ahead. All in all, our results support the view that an analysis based on a large set of monetary and credit variables is a more useful tool for assessing risks to price stability than one that simply focuses on the dynamic of the overall monetary aggregate M3.

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Paper provided by Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area in its series Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) with number 713.

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Date of creation: May 2009
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Handle: RePEc:bdi:wptemi:td_713_09
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