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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. Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum & Charles L. Evans, 2001. "Nominal rigidities and the dynamic effects of a shock to monetary policy," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Jun.
  2. Coibion, Olivier & Gorodnichenko, Yuriy & Kueng, Lorenz & Silvia, John, 2012. "Innocent Bystanders? Monetary Policy and Inequality in the U.S," IZA Discussion Papers 6633, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. 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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  8. Thoma, Mark A., 1994. "Subsample instability and asymmetries in money-income causality," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 64(1-2), pages 279-306.
  9. RenÈ Garcia, 2002. "Are the Effects of Monetary Policy Asymmetric?," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 40(1), pages 102-119, January.
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  12. 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.
  13. Joseph Vavra, 2011. "Inflation Dynamics and Time-Varying Uncertainty: New Evidence and an Ss Interpretation," 2011 Meeting Papers 126, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  14. 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.
  15. Alan J. Auerbach & Yuriy Gorodnichenko, 2011. "Fiscal Multipliers in Recession and Expansion," NBER Working Papers 17447, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Òscar Jordà, 2005. "Estimation and Inference of Impulse Responses by Local Projections," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(1), pages 161-182, March.
  17. 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.
  18. 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.
  19. Joseph Vavra & David Berger, 2012. "Consumption Dynamics During the Great Recession," 2012 Meeting Papers 109, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  20. Christina D. Romer & David H. Romer, 2004. "A New Measure of Monetary Shocks: Derivation and Implications," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(4), pages 1055-1084, September.
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