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Monetary Policy, Real Activity, and Credit Spreads : Evidence from Bayesian Proxy SVARs

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Abstract

This paper studies the interaction between monetary policy, financial markets, and the real economy. We develop a Bayesian framework to estimate proxy structural vector autoregressions (SVARs) in which monetary policy shocks are identified by exploiting the information contained in high frequency data. For the Great Moderation period, we find that monetary policy shocks are key drivers of fluctuations in industrial output and corporate credit spreads, explaining about 20 percent of the volatility of these variables. Central to this result is a systematic component of monetary policy characterized by a direct and economically significant reaction to changes in credit spreads. We show that the failure to account for this endogenous reaction induces an attenuation bias in the response of all variables to monetary shocks.

Suggested Citation

  • Dario Caldara & Edward Herbst, 2016. "Monetary Policy, Real Activity, and Credit Spreads : Evidence from Bayesian Proxy SVARs," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2016-049, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedgfe:2016-49
    DOI: 10.17016/FEDS.2016.049
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Christina D. Romer & David H. Romer, 2004. "A New Measure of Monetary Shocks: Derivation and Implications," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(4), pages 1055-1084, September.
    2. Karel Mertens & Morten O. Ravn, 2013. "The Dynamic Effects of Personal and Corporate Income Tax Changes in the United States," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 103(4), pages 1212-1247, June.
    3. Bernanke, Ben S. & Gertler, Mark & Gilchrist, Simon, 1999. "The financial accelerator in a quantitative business cycle framework," Handbook of Macroeconomics, in: J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.),Handbook of Macroeconomics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 21, pages 1341-1393, Elsevier.
    4. Olivier Coibion & Yuriy Gorodnichenko, 2012. "Why Are Target Interest Rate Changes So Persistent?," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 4(4), pages 126-162, October.
    5. Simon Gilchrist & David López-Salido & Egon Zakrajšek, 2015. "Monetary Policy and Real Borrowing Costs at the Zero Lower Bound," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 7(1), pages 77-109, January.
    6. Mark Bognanni & Edward Herbst, 2014. "Estimating (Markov-Switching) VAR Models without Gibbs Sampling: A Sequential Monte Carlo Approach," Working Papers (Old Series) 1427, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
    7. Juan F. Rubio-Ramírez & Daniel F. Waggoner & Tao Zha, 2010. "Structural Vector Autoregressions: Theory of Identification and Algorithms for Inference," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 77(2), pages 665-696.
    8. Boivin, Jean & Kiley, Michael T. & Mishkin, Frederic S., 2010. "How Has the Monetary Transmission Mechanism Evolved Over Time?," Handbook of Monetary Economics, in: Benjamin M. Friedman & Michael Woodford (ed.),Handbook of Monetary Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 8, pages 369-422, Elsevier.
    9. Arias, Jonas E. & Caldara, Dario & Rubio-Ramírez, Juan F., 2019. "The systematic component of monetary policy in SVARs: An agnostic identification procedure," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 101(C), pages 1-13.
    10. Silvia Miranda-Agrippino, 2015. "Unsurprising Shocks: Information, Premia, and the Monetary Transmission," Discussion Papers 1613, Centre for Macroeconomics (CFM), revised Apr 2016.
    11. Refet S Gürkaynak & Brian Sack & Eric Swanson, 2005. "Do Actions Speak Louder Than Words? The Response of Asset Prices to Monetary Policy Actions and Statements," International Journal of Central Banking, International Journal of Central Banking, vol. 1(1), May.
    12. Caldara, Dario & Fuentes-Albero, Cristina & Gilchrist, Simon & Zakrajšek, Egon, 2016. "The macroeconomic impact of financial and uncertainty shocks," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 88(C), pages 185-207.
    13. Hanson, Michael S., 2004. "The "price puzzle" reconsidered," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(7), pages 1385-1413, October.
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    Keywords

    Bayesian Inference; Monetary policy; Vector Autoregressions;

    JEL classification:

    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy
    • C3 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables
    • C5 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling

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