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The financial market impact of quantitative easing

  • Joyce, Michael


    (Bank of England)

  • Lasaosa, Ana


    (Bank of England)

  • Stevens , Ibrahim


    (Bank of England)

  • Tong, Matthew


    (Bank of England)

As part of its response to the global banking crisis and a sharp downturn in domestic economic prospects, the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) began a programme of large-scale asset purchases (commonly referred to as quantitative easing or QE) in March 2009, with the aim of injecting additional money into the economy and so increasing nominal spending growth to a rate consistent with meeting the CPI inflation target in the medium term. By February 2010, the MPC had made £200 billion of purchases, most of which had been of UK government securities (gilts). Based on analysis of the reaction of financial market prices and econometric estimates, this paper attempts to assess the impact of the Bank’s QE policy on asset prices. Our estimates of the reaction of gilt prices to the programme suggest that QE may have depressed gilt yields by about 100 basis points. On balance the evidence seems to suggest that the largest part of the impact of QE came through a portfolio rebalancing channel. The wider impact on other asset prices is more difficult to disentangle from other influences: the initial impact was muted but the overall effects were potentially much larger, though subject to considerable uncertainty.

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Paper provided by Bank of England in its series Bank of England working papers with number 393.

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Length: 44 pages
Date of creation: 12 Jul 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:boe:boeewp:0393
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  1. Joseph Gagnon & Matthew Raskin & Julie Remache & Brian Sack, 2011. "Large-scale asset purchases by the Federal Reserve: did they work?," Economic Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, issue May, pages 41-59.
  2. James Clouse & Dale Henderson & Athanasios Orphanides & David Small & Peter Tinsley, 2000. "Monetary policy when the nominal short-term interest rate is zero," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2000-51, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  3. Charles Engel & Jeffrey A. Frankel & Kenneth A. Froot & Anthony P. Rodrigues, 1989. "Conditional Mean-Variance Efficiency of the U.S. Stock Market," NBER Working Papers 2890, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Ben S. Bernanke & Vincent R. Reinhart & Brian P. Sack, 2004. "Monetary policy alternatives at the zero bound: an empirical assessment," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2004-48, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  5. Inkinen, Mika & Stringa, Marco & Voutsinou, Kyriaki, 2010. "Interpreting equity price movements since the start of the financial crisis," Bank of England Quarterly Bulletin, Bank of England, vol. 50(1), pages 24-33.
  6. Vladimir Klyuev & Phil De Imus & Krishna Srinivasan, 2009. "Unconventional Choices for Unconventional Times Credit and Quantitative Easing in Advanced Economies," IMF Staff Position Notes 2009/27, International Monetary Fund.
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