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How does unconventional monetary policy affect inequality? Evidence from Japan

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  • Ayako Saiki
  • Jon Frost

Abstract

Inequality has been largely ignored in the literature and practice of monetary policy, but is gaining more attention recently. We look at how a decade of unconventional monetary policy (UMP) in Japan affected inequality among households using survey data. Our vector auto regression (VAR) results show that UMP widened income inequality, especially after 2008 when quantitative easing became more aggressive. This is largely due to the portfolio channel. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study to empirically analyze the distributional impact of UMP. Japan's extensive experience with UMP may hold important policy implications for other countries.

Suggested Citation

  • Ayako Saiki & Jon Frost, 2014. "How does unconventional monetary policy affect inequality? Evidence from Japan," DNB Working Papers 423, Netherlands Central Bank, Research Department.
  • Handle: RePEc:dnb:dnbwpp:423
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    File URL: https://www.dnb.nl/en/binaries/Working%20Paper%20423_tcm47-307334.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Jakob de Haan & Willem van den End & Jon Frost & Christiaan Pattipeilohy & Mostafa Tabbae, 2013. "Unconventional Monetary Policy of the ECB during the Financial Crisis: An Assessment and New Evidence," SUERF 50th Anniversary Volume Chapters, SUERF - The European Money and Finance Forum.
    2. Albanesi, Stefania, 2007. "Inflation and inequality," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(4), pages 1088-1114, May.
    3. Schlicht, Ekkehart, 2007. "Wage Dispersion, Over-Qualification, and Reder Competition," Economics - The Open-Access, Open-Assessment E-Journal, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW), vol. 1, pages 1-31.
    4. Peter Skott, 2013. "Increasing Inequality and Financial Instability," Review of Radical Political Economics, Union for Radical Political Economics, vol. 45(4), pages 478-488, December.
    5. N. Gregory Mankiw, 2013. "Defending the One Percent," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 27(3), pages 21-34, Summer.
    6. Eswar S. Prasad, 2010. "Financial Sector Regulation and Reforms in Emerging Markets: An Overview," NBER Working Papers 16428, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Claudio Borio & Piti Disyatat, 2010. "Unconventional Monetary Policies: An Appraisal," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 78(s1), pages 53-89, September.
    8. Arvind Krishnamurthy & Annette Vissing-Jorgensen, 2011. "The Effects of Quantitative Easing on Interest Rates: Channels and Implications for Policy," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 42(2 (Fall)), pages 215-287.
    9. Jeremy Lise & Nao Sudo & Michio Suzuki & Ken Yamada & Tomoaki Yamada, 2014. "Wage, Income and Consumption Inequality in Japan, 1981-2008: from Boom to Lost Decades," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 17(4), pages 582-612, October.
    10. Matthias Doepke & Martin Schneider, 2006. "Inflation and the Redistribution of Nominal Wealth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 114(6), pages 1069-1097, December.
    11. Erosa, Andres & Ventura, Gustavo, 2002. "On inflation as a regressive consumption tax," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(4), pages 761-795, May.
    12. Nicholas Rohde, 2008. "A comparison of inequality measurement techniques," Discussion Papers Series 377, School of Economics, University of Queensland, Australia.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Areosa, Waldyr Dutra & Areosa, Marta B.M., 2016. "The inequality channel of monetary transmission," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 214-230.
    2. Karen Davtyan, 2016. "“Income Inequality and Monetary Policy: An Analysis on the Long Run Relation”," AQR Working Papers 201604, University of Barcelona, Regional Quantitative Analysis Group, revised Apr 2016.
    3. Christophe Blot & Jérôme Creel & Paul Hubert & Fabien Labondance & Xavier Ragot, 2015. "The redistributive effects of QE," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/16fo245k6a8, Sciences Po.
    4. Karen Davtyan, 2016. "“The Distributive Effects of Conventional and Unconventional Monetary Policies”," IREA Working Papers 201606, University of Barcelona, Research Institute of Applied Economics, revised Apr 2016.
    5. Karen Davtyan, 2016. "“Income Inequality and Monetary Policy: An analysis on the Long Run Relation”," IREA Working Papers 201604, University of Barcelona, Research Institute of Applied Economics, revised Apr 2016.
    6. Boris Cournède & Oliver Denk & Peter Hoeller, 2015. "Finance and Inclusive Growth," OECD Economic Policy Papers 14, OECD Publishing.
    7. repec:prg:jnlpep:v:2017:y:2017:i:6:id:630:p:633-645 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Karen Davtyan, 2016. "“The Distributive effects of conventional and unconventional monetary policies”," AQR Working Papers 201606, University of Barcelona, Regional Quantitative Analysis Group, revised Apr 2016.
    9. repec:prg:jnlpep:v:preprint:id:630:p:1-13 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Pierre Monnin, 2017. "Monetary Policy, Macroprudential Regulation and Inequality," Discussion Notes 1702, Council on Economic Policies.
    11. repec:eee:ecmode:v:65:y:2017:i:c:p:106-118 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Goodness C. Aye & Matthew W. Clance & Rangan Gupta, 2017. "The Effectiveness of Monetary and Fiscal Policy Shocks on U.S. Inequality: The Role of Uncertainty," Working Papers 201782, University of Pretoria, Department of Economics.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Monetary Policy; Central Banking; Stabilization Policy; Inequality;

    JEL classification:

    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy
    • E63 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Comparative or Joint Analysis of Fiscal and Monetary Policy; Stabilization; Treasury Policy
    • D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement

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