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Transparency, Flexibility and Macroeconomic Stabilization

  • Petra Geraats

Many central banks have become more transparent during the last decade, in particular about macroeconomic prospects. This paper shows that such economic transparency could give central banks greater flexibility to respond to macroeconomic shocks. In particular, it allows central banks to stabilize aggregate demand and supply shocks without affecting private sector inflation expectations. In contrast, opaque central banks limit their stabilization efforts to avoid disturbing inflation expectations. As a result, they mute their interest rate response and no longer fully offset anticipated demand shocks. This leads to macroeconomic volatility that is socially detrimental.

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Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 4642.

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Date of creation: 2014
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_4642
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  1. Ben S. Bernanke & Michael Woodford, 1997. "Inflation Forecasts and Monetary Policy," NBER Working Papers 6157, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Carl E. Walsh, 2007. "Transparency, Flexibility, and Inflation Targeting," Central Banking, Analysis, and Economic Policies Book Series, in: Frederic S. Miskin & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel & Norman Loayza (Series Editor) & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel (Se (ed.), Monetary Policy under Inflation Targeting, edition 1, volume 11, chapter 7, pages 227-263 Central Bank of Chile.
  3. Alan S. Blinder & Michael Ehrmann & Marcel Fratzscher & Jakob De Haan & David-Jan Jansen, 2008. "Central Bank Communication and Monetary Policy: A Survey of Theory and Evidence," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 46(4), pages 910-45, December.
  4. 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.
  5. Geraats, Petra M, 2000. "Why Adopt Transparency? The Publication of Central Bank Forecasts," CEPR Discussion Papers 2582, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Stephen Morris & Hyun Song Shin, 2002. "Social Value of Public Information," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(5), pages 1521-1534, December.
  7. David H. Romer & Christina D. Romer, 2000. "Federal Reserve Information and the Behavior of Interest Rates," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(3), pages 429-457, June.
  8. Petra Geraats, 2009. "Trends in Monetary Policy Transparency," CESifo Working Paper Series 2584, CESifo Group Munich.
  9. Hans Gersbach, 2003. "On the negative social value of central banks' knowledge transparency," Economics of Governance, Springer, vol. 4(2), pages 91-102, 08.
  10. Robert J. Barro & David B. Gordon, 1981. "A Positive Theory of Monetary Policy in a Natural-Rate Model," NBER Working Papers 0807, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. McCallum, Bennett T., 1983. "On non-uniqueness in rational expectations models : An attempt at perspective," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 11(2), pages 139-168.
  12. Henrik Jensen, . "Optimal Degrees of Tranaparency in Monetary Policymaking," EPRU Working Paper Series 01-01, Economic Policy Research Unit (EPRU), University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
  13. Geraats, P.M., 2004. "Transparency and Reputation: The Publication of Central Bank Forecasts," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 0473, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
  14. Joe Peek & Eric S. Rosengren & Geoffrey M. B. Tootell, 1999. "Is bank supervision central to central banking?," Working Papers 99-7, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.
  15. Petra M. Geraats, 2002. "Central Bank Transparency," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(483), pages 532-565, November.
  16. repec:oup:qjecon:v:114:y:1999:i:2:p:629-653 is not listed on IDEAS
  17. Carl E. Walsh, 2007. "Optimal Economic Transparency," International Journal of Central Banking, International Journal of Central Banking, vol. 3(1), pages 5-36, March.
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