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Why the Publication of Socially Harmful Information May Be Socially Desirable

We propose a signaling model in which the central bank and firms receive information on cost-push shocks independently from each other. If the firms’ signals are rather unlikely to be informative, central banks should remain silent about their own private signals. If, however, firms are sufficiently likely to be informed, it is socially desirable for the central bank to reveal its private information. By doing so, the central bank eliminates the distortions stemming from the signaling incentives under opacity. Our model may also explain the recent trend towards more transparency in monetary policy.

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File URL: https://www.ethz.ch/content/dam/ethz/special-interest/mtec/cer-eth/cer-eth-dam/documents/working-papers/WP-09-122.pdf
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Paper provided by CER-ETH - Center of Economic Research (CER-ETH) at ETH Zurich in its series CER-ETH Economics working paper series with number 09/122.

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Length: 37 pages
Date of creation: Nov 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:eth:wpswif:09-122
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  1. Hans Gersbach & Volker Hahn, 2009. "Voting Transparency in a Monetary Union," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 41(5), pages 831-853, 08.
  2. Petra M. Geraats, 2002. "Central Bank Transparency," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(483), pages 532-565, November.
  3. Anne Sibert, 2009. "Is Transparency About Central Bank Plans Desirable?," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 7(4), pages 831-857, 06.
  4. Clarida, R. & Gali, J. & Gertler, M., 1999. "The Science of Monetary Policy: A New Keynesian Perspective," Working Papers 99-13, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  5. Marvin Goodfriend, 1985. "Monetary mystique : secrecy and central banking," Working Paper 85-07, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond.
  6. Calvo, Guillermo A., 1983. "Staggered prices in a utility-maximizing framework," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 383-398, September.
  7. Faust, J. & Svensson, L.E.O., 1998. "Transparency and Credibility: Monetary Policy with Unobservable Goals," Papers 636, Stockholm - International Economic Studies.
  8. Cukierman, Alex & Meltzer, Allan H, 1986. "A Theory of Ambiguity, Credibility, and Inflation under Discretion and Asymmetric Information," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 54(5), pages 1099-1128, September.
  9. Sibert, Anne, 2002. "Monetary policy with uncertain central bank preferences," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 46(6), pages 1093-1109, June.
  10. Alan S. Blinder & Michael Ehrmann & Marcel Fratzscher & Jakob De Haan & David-Jan Jansen, 2008. "Central Bank Communication and Monetary Policy: A Survey of Theory and Evidence," NBER Working Papers 13932, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Hans Gersbach & Volker Hahn, 2007. "Information Content of Wages and Monetary Policy," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 39(1), pages 133-149, 02.
  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. Ball, Laurence & Gregory Mankiw, N. & Reis, Ricardo, 2005. "Monetary policy for inattentive economies," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(4), pages 703-725, May.
  14. repec:pri:cepsud:161blinder is not listed on IDEAS
  15. Gersbach, Hans & Hahn, Volker, 2008. "Monetary Policy Inclinations," CEPR Discussion Papers 6761, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  16. Stephen Morris & Hyun Song Shin & Hui Tong, 2006. "Social Value of Public Information: Morris and Shin (2002) Is Actually Pro-Transparency, Not Con: Reply," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(1), pages 453-455, March.
  17. Jensen, Henrik, 2001. "Optimal Degrees of Transparency in Monetary Policymaking," CEPR Discussion Papers 2689, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  18. Clarida, Richard & Gali, Jordi & Gertler, Mark, 2002. "A simple framework for international monetary policy analysis," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(5), pages 879-904, July.
  19. Michael Spence, 1973. "Job Market Signaling," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 87(3), pages 355-374.
  20. Kenneth Rogoff, 1985. "The Optimal Degree of Commitment to an Intermediate Monetary Target," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 100(4), pages 1169-1189.
  21. Jón Steinsson, 2000. "Optimal monetary policy in an economy with inflation persistence," Economics wp11, Department of Economics, Central bank of Iceland.
  22. Stephen Morris & Hyun Song Shin, 2002. "Social Value of Public Information," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(5), pages 1521-1534, December.
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