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Is money still useful for policy in East Asia?

  • Ramon Moreno
  • Reuven Glick

Since the East Asian crises of 1997, a number of East Asian economies have allowed greater exchange rate flexibility and abandoned monetary targets in favor of inflation targeting, apparently because the perceived usefulness of money as a predictor of inflation, i.e. the information content of money, has fallen. In this paper, we discuss factors that are likely to have influenced the stability of the relationship between money and inflation, particularly in the 1990s, and then assess this relationship in a set of East Asian economies. We focus on (1) the stability of the behavior of the velocity of money; (2) the ability of money growth to predict inflation as measured by tests of Granger causality, and (3) the contribution of money to the variance of the forecast error of inflation. We find evidence that, with a few exceptions in which capital flows were particularly large, velocity remained generally stable, as did the relationship between money growth and inflation. However, the contribution of money to inflation forecast errors fell considerably in the 1990s, reducing its value as an information variable to monetary authorities.

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Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco in its series Pacific Basin Working Paper Series with number 2001-12.

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Date of creation: 2001
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:fip:fedfpb:2001-12
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  1. Cara S. Lown & Stavros Peristiani & Kenneth J. Robinson, 1999. "What was behind the M2 breakdown?," Staff Reports 83, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  2. Clarida, Richard & GalĂ­, Jordi & Gertler, Mark, 1997. "Monetary Policy Rules in Practice: Some International Evidence," CEPR Discussion Papers 1750, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Michael Dotsey & Christopher Otrok, 1994. "M2 and monetary policy: a critical review of the recent debate," Economic Quarterly, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, issue Win, pages 41-49.
  4. R. I. McKinnon, 2000. "The East Asian Dollar Standard, Life After Death?," Economic Notes, Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena SpA, vol. 29(1), pages 31-82, 02.
  5. Francis Breedon & Paul Fisher, 1993. "M0: Causes and Consequences," Bank of England working papers 20, Bank of England.
  6. Palivos, Theodore & Wang, Ping, 1993. "Money, output, and income velocity," Working Papers 9305, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.
  7. Estrella, Arturo & Mishkin, Frederic S., 1997. "Is there a role for monetary aggregates in the conduct of monetary policy?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(2), pages 279-304, October.
  8. Kelly Ragan & Bharat Trehan, 1998. "Is it time to look at M2 again?," FRBSF Economic Letter, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue mar6.
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