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Interpreting the Unconventional U.S. Monetary Policy of 2007-09

  • Ricardo Reis

    ()

    (Columbia University - Department of Economics)

This paper reviews the unconventional U.S. monetary policy responses to the financial and real crises of 2007-09, divided into three groups: interest rate policy, quantitative policy, and credit policy. To interpret interest rate policy, it compares the Federal Reserve's actions with the literature on optimal policy in a liquidity trap. This comparison suggests that policy has been in the direction indicated by theory, but it has not gone far enough. To interpret quantitative policy, the paper reviews the determination of inflation under different policy regimes. The main danger for inflation from current actions is that the Federal Reserve may lose its policy independence; a beneficial side effect of the crisis is that the Friedman rule can be implemented by paying interest on reserves. To interpret credit policy, the paper presents a new model of capital market imperfections with different financial institutions and a role for securitization , leveraging, and mark-to-market accounting. The model suggests that providing credit to traders in securities markets is a more effective response than extending credit to the originators of loans.

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File URL: http://www.econ.columbia.edu/RePEc/pdf/DP0910-13.pdf
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Paper provided by Columbia University, Department of Economics in its series Discussion Papers with number 0910-13.

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Date of creation: 2010
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Handle: RePEc:clu:wpaper:0910-13
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  1. Lars E.O. Svensson, 2003. "Escaping from a Liquidity Trap and Deflation: The Foolproof Way and Others," NBER Working Papers 10195, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Kiminori Matsuyama, 2007. "Aggregate Implications of Credit Market Imperfections," NBER Working Papers 13209, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Matthew B. Canzoneri & Robert E. Cumby & Behzad T. Diba, 1998. "Is the Price Level Determined by the Needs of Fiscal Solvency?," NBER Working Papers 6471, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Franklin Allen & Ana Babus & Elena Carletti, 2009. "Financial Crises: Theory and Evidence," Annual Review of Financial Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 1(1), pages 97-116, November.
  5. Markus K. Brunnermeier, 2009. "Deciphering the Liquidity and Credit Crunch 2007-2008," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 23(1), pages 77-100, Winter.
  6. Romer, Christina D., 1992. "What Ended the Great Depression?," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 52(04), pages 757-784, December.
  7. Alan Auerbach & Maurice Obstfeld, 2003. "The case for open-market purchases in a liquidity trap," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Mar.
  8. Michael Woodford, 1995. "Price Level Determinacy Without Control of a Monetary Aggregate," NBER Working Papers 5204, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Reis, Ricardo, 2007. "The analytics of monetary non-neutrality in the Sidrauski model," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 94(1), pages 129-135, January.
  10. Berriel Tiago C & Bhattarai Saroj, 2009. "Monetary Policy and Central Bank Balance Sheet Concerns," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 9(1), pages 1-33, January.
  11. Gary Gorton, 2009. "Information, Liquidity, and the (Ongoing) Panic of 2007," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(2), pages 567-72, May.
  12. Frederic S. Mishkin, 2009. "Monetary Policy Strategy," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262513374, June.
  13. 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.
  14. Sims, Christopher A, 1994. "A Simple Model for Study of the Determination of the Price Level and the Interaction of Monetary and Fiscal Policy," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 4(3), pages 381-99.
  15. Gauti B. Eggertsson & Michael Woodford, 2003. "The Zero Bound on Interest Rates and Optimal Monetary Policy," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 34(1), pages 139-235.
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