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The timing of central bank communication

  • Ehrmann, Michael
  • Fratzscher, Marcel

This paper explores whether there are systematic patterns as to when members of the decision-making committees of the Federal Reserve, the Bank of England and the European Central Bank communicate with the public, and under what circumstances such communication has the ability to move financial markets. The findings suggest that communication is generally seen as a tool to prepare markets for upcoming decisions, as it becomes more intense before committee meetings, and particularly so prior to interest rate changes. At the same time, markets react more strongly to communication prior to policy changes. Other instances where communication becomes more intense, or where financial markets become more responsive are also identified; even though these are more specific to the individual central banks, they are consistent with differences in the central banks’ monetary policy strategies and communication policies. JEL Classification: E43, E52, E58, G12

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Paper provided by European Central Bank in its series Working Paper Series with number 0565.

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Date of creation: Dec 2005
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Handle: RePEc:ecb:ecbwps:20050565
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  1. Michael Ehrmann & Marcel Fratzscher, 2004. "Equal size, equal role? interest rate interdependence between the euro area and the United States," International Finance Discussion Papers 800, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  2. Jeffrey D. Amado & Stephen Morris & Hyun Song Shin, 2003. "Communication and Monetary Policy," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1405, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  3. Rosa, Carlo & Verga, Giovanni, 2007. "On the consistency and effectiveness of central bank communication: Evidence from the ECB," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 23(1), pages 146-175, March.
  4. Reeves, Rachel & Sawicki, Michael, 2007. "Do financial markets react to Bank of England communication?," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 23(1), pages 207-227, March.
  5. Michael Ehrmann & Marcel Fratzscher, 2007. "Transparency, Disclosure, and the Federal Reserve," International Journal of Central Banking, International Journal of Central Banking, vol. 3(1), pages 179-225, March.
  6. David-Jan Jansen & Jakob de Haan, 2006. "Look who's talking: ECB communication during the first years of EMU," International Journal of Finance & Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 11(3), pages 219-228.
  7. Nelson, Daniel B, 1991. "Conditional Heteroskedasticity in Asset Returns: A New Approach," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(2), pages 347-70, March.
  8. Otmar Issing, 2005. "Communication, transparency, accountability: monetary policy in the twenty-first century," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Mar, pages 65-83.
  9. Helge Berger & Jakob de Haan & Jan-Egbert Sturm, 2006. "Does Money Matter in the ECB Strategy? New Evidence Based on ECB Communication," KOF Working papers 06-125, KOF Swiss Economic Institute, ETH Zurich.
  10. Marco Hoeberichts & Mewael F. Tesfaselassie & Sylvester Eijffinger, 2009. "Central bank communication and output stabilization," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 61(2), pages 395-411, April.
  11. Refet Gurkaynak & Brian Sack & Eric Swanson, 2005. "Do Actions Speak Louder than Words? The Response of Asset Prices to Monetary Policy Actions and Statements," Macroeconomics 0504013, EconWPA.
  12. Lars E. O. Svensson, 2006. "Social Value of Public Information: Comment: Morris and Shin (2002) Is Actually Pro-Transparency, Not Con," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(1), pages 448-452, March.
  13. W.H. Buiter, 1999. "Alice in Euroland," CEP Discussion Papers dp0423, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  14. Ben S. Bernanke & Vincent R. Reinhart & Brian P. Sack, 2004. "Monetary policy alternatives at the zero bound: an empirical assessment," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2004-48, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  15. repec:ner:tilbur:urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-129375 is not listed on IDEAS
  16. Alan S. Blinder, 1999. "Central Banking in Theory and Practice," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262522608, June.
  17. Demiralp, Selva & Jorda, Oscar, 2004. "The Response of Term Rates to Fed Announcements," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 36(3), pages 387-405, June.
  18. Ehrmann, Michael & Fratzscher, Marcel, 2005. "Communication and decision-making by central bank committees: different strategies, same effectiveness?," Working Paper Series 0488, European Central Bank.
  19. Michael Woodford, 2005. "Central-bank communication and policy effectiveness," Discussion Papers 0506-07, Columbia University, Department of Economics.
  20. Daniel Kahneman, 2003. "Maps of Bounded Rationality: Psychology for Behavioral Economics," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(5), pages 1449-1475, December.
  21. Petra M. Geraats, 2002. "Central Bank Transparency," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(483), pages 532-565, November.
  22. Thornton, Daniel L., 2004. "The Fed and short-term rates: Is it open market operations, open mouth operations or interest rate smoothing?," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 28(3), pages 475-498, March.
  23. Heinemann, Friedrich & Ullrich, Katrin, 2005. "Does it Pay to Watch Central Bankers' Lips? The Information Content of ECB Wording," ZEW Discussion Papers 05-70, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
  24. Carlo Rosa & Giovanni Verga, 2005. "Is ECB Communication Effective?," CEP Discussion Papers dp0682, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  25. Guthrie, Graeme & Wright, Julian, 2000. "Open mouth operations," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(2), pages 489-516, October.
  26. Gerlach, Stefan, 2004. "Interest Rate Setting by the ECB: Words and Deeds," CEPR Discussion Papers 4775, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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