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How much does the public know about the ECB's monetary policy? Evidence from a survey of Duch households

  • Carin van der Cruijsen
  • David-Jan Jansen
  • Jakob de Haan

Does the general public know what central banks do? Is this kind of knowledge relevant? Using a survey of Dutch households, we investigate these questions for the case of the European Central Bank (ECB). Our findings suggest that knowledge on the ECB's objectives is far from perfect. Both a weak desire to be informed and unawareness of insufficient knowledge are barriers for improving the public's understanding of monetary policy. However, our results also show that more intensive use of information improves understanding, suggesting that the media channel may play an important and constructive role in building knowledge. Finally, we find that knowledge on monetary policy objectives contributes to an individual's ability to form realistic inflation expectations.

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File URL: http://www.dnb.nl/binaries/Working%20paper%20252_tcm46-236503.pdf
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Paper provided by Netherlands Central Bank, Research Department in its series DNB Working Papers with number 252.

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Date of creation: Jul 2010
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Handle: RePEc:dnb:dnbwpp:252
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  1. N. Gregory Mankiw & Ricardo Reis, 2001. "Sticky information versus sticky prices: a proposal to replace the New-Keynesian Phillips curve," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Jun.
  2. Matthias Neuenkirch, 2010. "Managing Financial Market Expectations: The Role of Central Bank Transparency and Central Bank Communication," MAGKS Papers on Economics 201028, Philipps-Universität Marburg, Faculty of Business Administration and Economics, Department of Economics (Volkswirtschaftliche Abteilung).
  3. Juster, F. Thomas, 1981. "An expectational view of consumer spending prospects," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 1(2), pages 87-103, June.
  4. Papke, Leslie E & Wooldridge, Jeffrey M, 1996. "Econometric Methods for Fractional Response Variables with an Application to 401(K) Plan Participation Rates," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 11(6), pages 619-32, Nov.-Dec..
  5. Joshua D. Angrist & Jörn-Steffen Pischke, 2009. "Mostly Harmless Econometrics: An Empiricist's Companion," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 8769.
  6. William A. Branch, 2004. "The Theory of Rationally Heterogeneous Expectations: Evidence from Survey Data on Inflation Expectations," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 114(497), pages 592-621, 07.
  7. David-Jan Jansen & Robert Mosch & Carin Cruijsen, 2015. "When Does the General Public Lose Trust in Banks?," Journal of Financial Services Research, Springer, vol. 48(2), pages 127-141, October.
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