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

Author

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

Abstract

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. JEL Classification: D12, D84, E52, E58

Suggested Citation

  • van der Cruijsen, Carin & Jansen, David-Jan & de Haan, Jakob, 2010. "How much does the public know about the ECB's monetary policy? Evidence from a survey of Dutch households," Working Paper Series 1265, European Central Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:ecb:ecbwps:20101265
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Author-Name: Alan S. Blinder & Alan B. Krueger, 2004. "What Does the Public Know about Economic Policy, and How Does It Know It?," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 35(1), pages 327-397.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    ECB; financial literacy; inflation expectations; knowledge; monetary policy; transparency;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis
    • D84 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Expectations; Speculations
    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy
    • E58 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Central Banks and Their Policies

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