IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/hes/wpaper/0032.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Monetary policy without interest rates. Evidence from France’s Golden Age (1948-1973) using a narrative approach

Author

Listed:
  • Eric Monnet

    () (Paris School of Economics)

Abstract

Central banking in France from 1948 to 1973 was a paradigmatic example of an unconventional policy relying on quantities rather than on interest rates. Usual SVAR find no effect of policy shocks and support the common view that monetary policy was ineffective over this period. I argue that only a narrative approach is able to account for the peculiarity and complexity of quantitative controls on money and credit. Using archival evidence, I measure monetary policy stance with a dummy variable denoting restrictive episodes. Impulse response functions then show standard patterns; monetary policy shocks have a strong and long lasting effect. These results offer a revisionist account of postwar monetary policy under Bretton Woods and before the Great Inflation. They also suggest that quantities of money and credit can play a greater role than their prices in the adjustment process of the economy.

Suggested Citation

  • Eric Monnet, 2012. "Monetary policy without interest rates. Evidence from France’s Golden Age (1948-1973) using a narrative approach," Working Papers 0032, European Historical Economics Society (EHES).
  • Handle: RePEc:hes:wpaper:0032
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://ehes.org/EHES_No32.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Leeper, Eric M., 1997. "Narrative and VAR approaches to monetary policy: Common identification problems," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(3), pages 641-657, December.
    2. Benati, Luca & Goodhart, Charles, 2010. "Monetary Policy Regimes and Economic Performance: The Historical Record, 1979-2008," Handbook of Monetary Economics,in: Benjamin M. Friedman & Michael Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Monetary Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 21, pages 1159-1236 Elsevier.
    3. Demetriades, Panicos O. & Luintel, Kul B., 2001. "Financial restraints in the South Korean miracle," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(2), pages 459-479, April.
    4. Cúrdia, Vasco & Woodford, Michael, 2011. "The central-bank balance sheet as an instrument of monetarypolicy," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(1), pages 54-79, January.
    5. Capie,Forrest, 2010. "The Bank of England," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521192828, May.
    6. Leeper, Eric M. & Gordon, David B., 1992. "In search of the liquidity effect," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(3), pages 341-369, June.
    7. Bagliano, Fabio C. & Favero, Carlo A., 1998. "Measuring monetary policy with VAR models: An evaluation," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 42(6), pages 1069-1112, June.
    8. Broadberry,Stephen & O'Rourke,Kevin H., 2010. "The Cambridge Economic History of Modern Europe," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521708395, March.
    9. Milton Friedman & Anna J. Schwartz, 1963. "A Monetary History of the United States, 1867–1960," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number frie63-1.
    10. Carmen M. Reinhart & M. Belen Sbrancia1, 2015. "The liquidation of government debt," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 30(82), pages 291-333.
    11. Benoît Mojon, 1998. "Monetary Policy Under a Fixed Exchange Rate Regime, the Case of France 1987-1996," Working Papers 1998-14, CEPII research center.
    12. Battilossi, Stefano & Foreman-Peck, James & Kling, Gerhard, 2008. "European business cycles and economic policy, 1945-2007," IFCS - Working Papers in Economic History.WH wp08-13, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. Instituto Figuerola.
    13. van Wijnbergen, Sweder, 1983. "Credit policy, inflation and growth in a financially repressed economy," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(1-2), pages 45-65.
    14. Olivier Coibion, 2012. "Are the Effects of Monetary Policy Shocks Big or Small?," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 4(2), pages 1-32, April.
    15. Mojon, Benoît, 2008. "When did unsystematic monetary policy have an effect on inflation?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 52(3), pages 487-497, April.
    16. Gerald Carlino & Robert Defina, 1998. "The Differential Regional Effects Of Monetary Policy," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 80(4), pages 572-587, November.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Kelber, A. & Monnet, E., 2014. "Macroprudential policy and quantitative instruments: a European historical perspective," Financial Stability Review, Banque de France, issue 18, pages 151-160, April.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    monetary policy; credit controls; VAR; narrative approach; liquidity puzzle; Banque de France; Bretton Woods;

    JEL classification:

    • N14 - Economic History - - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics; Industrial Structure; Growth; Fluctuations - - - Europe: 1913-
    • E31 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Price Level; Inflation; Deflation
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • E51 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Money Supply; Credit; Money Multipliers
    • 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

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:hes:wpaper:0032. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Paul Sharp). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/ehessea.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.