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Pushing on a string: US monetary policy is less powerful in recessions

  • Silvana Tenreyro

    ()

    (London School of Economics (LSE), Centre for Economic Performance (CEP)
    Centre for Macroeconomics (CFM))

  • Gregory Thwaites

    ()

    (Centre for Macroeconomics (CFM))

We estimate the impulse response of key US macro series to the monetary policy shocks identified by Romer and Romer (2004), allowing the response to depend flexibly on the state of the business cycle. We find strong evidence that the effects of monetary policy on real and nominal variables are more powerful in expansions than in recessions. The magnitude of the difference is particularly large in durables expenditure and business investment. The effect is not attributable to diferences in the response of fiscal variables or the external finance premium. We find some evidence that contractionary policy shocks have more powerful effects than expansionary shocks. But contractionary shocks have not been more common in booms, so this asymmetry cannot explain our main finding.

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File URL: http://www.centreformacroeconomics.ac.uk/Discussion-Papers/2013/CFMDP2013-01-Paper.pdf
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Paper provided by Centre for Macroeconomics (CFM) in its series Discussion Papers with number 1301.

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Length: 30 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cfm:wpaper:1301
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.centreformacroeconomics.ac.uk/

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  1. Alan J. Auerbach & Yuriy Gorodnichenko, 2012. "Fiscal Multipliers in Recession and Expansion," NBER Chapters, in: Fiscal Policy after the Financial Crisis, pages 63-98 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  3. Simon Gilchrist & Egon Zakrajšek, 2011. "Credit Spreads and Business Cycle Fluctuations," NBER Working Papers 17021, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  8. Karl Whelan, 2000. "A guide to the use of chain aggregated NIPA data," Open Access publications 10197/253, School of Economics, University College Dublin.
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  10. Peersman, Gert & Smets, Frank, 2001. "Are the effects of monetary policy in the euro area greater in recessions than in booms?," Working Paper Series 0052, European Central Bank.
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  12. Garcia, R. & Schaller, H., 1995. "Are the Effects of Monetary Policy Asymmetric?," Cahiers de recherche 9505, Centre interuniversitaire de recherche en économie quantitative, CIREQ.
  13. Valerie A. Ramey & Sarah Zubairy, 2014. "Government Spending Multipliers in Good Times and in Bad: Evidence from U.S. Historical Data," NBER Working Papers 20719, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  15. Ming Chien Lo & Jeremy M. Piger, 2003. "Is the response of output to monetary policy asymmetric? evidence from a regime-switching coefficients model," Working Papers 2001-022, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
  16. Weise, Charles L, 1999. "The Asymmetric Effects of Monetary Policy: A Nonlinear Vector Autoregression Approach," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 31(1), pages 85-108, February.
  17. John C. Driscoll & Aart C. Kraay, 1998. "Consistent Covariance Matrix Estimation With Spatially Dependent Panel Data," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 80(4), pages 549-560, November.
  18. James Peery Cover, 1992. "Asymmetric Effects of Positive and Negative Money-Supply Shocks," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 107(4), pages 1261-1282.
  19. Joshua D. Angrist & Òscar Jordà & Guido M. Kuersteiner, 2013. "Semiparametric estimates of monetary policy effects: string theory revisited," Working Paper Series 2013-24, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  20. Thoma, Mark A., 1994. "Subsample instability and asymmetries in money-income causality," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 64(1-2), pages 279-306.
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