IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Social trust and central-bank independence

  • Berggren, Niclas

    (Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IFN))

  • Daunfeldt, Sven-Olov


    (HUI Research)

  • Hellström, Jörgen

    (Umea School of Business and Economics)

Central banks have been made more independent in many countries. A common rationale has been the existence of a credibility (or lack-of-trust) problem for monetary policy. This indicates a possible and until now unexplored link between social trust and central-bank independence. Our empirical findings, based on data from 149 countries, confirm that there is such a link, in the form of a u-shaped relationship. We suggest that two factors help explain this finding: the need for this kind of reform and the ability with which it can be implemented. At low trust levels, the need for central-bank independence is strong enough to dominate the low ability; at high trust levels the ability for reform is high and dominates the low need; at intermediate trust levels there is neither need nor ability strong enough to generate very independent central banks.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Our checks indicate that this address may not be valid because: 404 Not Found. If this is indeed the case, please notify (Helena Nilsson)

Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by HUI Research in its series HUI Working Papers with number 66.

in new window

Length: 23 pages
Date of creation: 22 May 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:hhs:huiwps:0066
Contact details of provider: Postal: HUI Research, Regeringsgatan 60, 103 29 Stockholm, Sweden
Phone: +46 (0)8 762 72 80
Fax: +46 (0)8 679 76 06
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Nathan Nunn & Leonard Wantchekon, 2009. "The Slave Trade and the Origins of Mistrust in Africa," NBER Working Papers 14783, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Jeroen Klomp & Jakob de Haan, 2010. "Inflation And Central Bank Independence: A Meta-Regression Analysis," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 24(4), pages 593-621, 09.
  3. repec:tpr:qjecon:v:125:y:2010:i:3:p:1015-1049 is not listed on IDEAS
  4. José Cheibub & Jennifer Gandhi & James Vreeland, 2010. "Democracy and dictatorship revisited," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 143(1), pages 67-101, April.
  5. Berger, Helge & de Haan, Jakob & Eijffinger, Sylvester C W, 2001. " Central Bank Independence: An Update of Theory and Evidence," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 15(1), pages 3-40, February.
  6. Frank A.G. den Butter & Robert H.J. Mosch, 2003. "The Dutch Miracle: Institutions, Networks, and Trust," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 159(2), pages 362-, June.
  7. Robert J. Barro & David B. Gordon, 1981. "A Positive Theory of Monetary Policy in a Natural-Rate Model," NBER Working Papers 0807, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson & Pablo Querubin & James A. Robinson, 2008. "When Does POlicy Reform Work? The Case of Central Bank Independence," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 39(1 (Spring), pages 351-429.
  9. Mangano, Gabriel, 1998. "Measuring Central Bank Independence: A Tale of Subjectivity and of Its Consequences," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 50(3), pages 468-92, July.
  10. Friedrich Heinemann & Benjamin Tanz, 2008. "The impact of trust on reforms," Journal of Economic Policy Reform, Taylor and Francis Journals, vol. 11(3), pages 173-185.
  11. Peter N. Ireland, 1998. "Does the Time-Consistency Problem Explain the Behavior of Inflation in the United States?," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 415, Boston College Department of Economics.
  12. Sven-Olov Daunfeldt & Jörgen Hellström & Mats Landström, 2013. "Why Do Politicians Implement Central Bank Independence Reforms?," Atlantic Economic Journal, International Atlantic Economic Society, vol. 41(4), pages 427-438, December.
  13. Luigi Guiso & Paola Sapienza & Luigi Zingales, 2004. "Cultural Biases in Economic Exchange," NBER Working Papers 11005, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Zak, Paul J & Knack, Stephen, 2001. "Trust and Growth," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 111(470), pages 295-321, April.
  15. Cukierman, Alex, 2007. "Central Bank Independence and Monetary Policymaking Institutions - Past Present and Future," CEPR Discussion Papers 6441, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  16. Mehmet Fatih Ekinci & Sebnem Kalemli-Ozcan & Bent Sorensen, 2007. "Financial Integration within EU Countries: The Role of Institutions, Confidence and Trust," NBER Working Papers 13440, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Berggren, Niclas & Jordahl, Henrik, 2005. "Free to Trust? Economic Freedom and Social Capital," Ratio Working Papers 64, The Ratio Institute.
  18. Paola Sapienza & Anna Toldra‐Simats & Luigi Zingales, 2013. "Understanding Trust," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 123(12), pages 1313-1332, December.
  19. Yann Algan & Pierre Cahuc, 2010. "Inherited Trust and Growth," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/432sbils8u9, Sciences Po.
  20. Guido Tabellini, 2006. "Culture and institutions: economic development in the regions of Europe," Levine's Working Paper Archive 321307000000000241, David K. Levine.
  21. Dearmon, Jacob & Grier, Kevin, 2009. "Trust and development," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 71(2), pages 210-220, August.
  22. Bernd Hayo & Stefan Voigt, 2005. "Inflation, Central Bank Independence and the Legal System," Money Macro and Finance (MMF) Research Group Conference 2005 57, Money Macro and Finance Research Group.
  23. Cukierman, Alex & Webb, Steven B & Neyapti, Bilin, 1992. "Measuring the Independence of Central Banks and Its Effect on Policy Outcomes," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 6(3), pages 353-98, September.
  24. Christian Thöni & Jean-Robert Tyran & Erik Wengström, 2010. "Microfoundations of Social Capital," NRN working papers 2010-19, The Austrian Center for Labor Economics and the Analysis of the Welfare State, Johannes Kepler University Linz, Austria.
  25. Forder, James, 1996. "On the Assessment and Implementation of 'Institutional' Remedies," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 48(1), pages 39-51, January.
  26. Manfred Neumann, 1991. "Precommitment by central bank independence," Open Economies Review, Springer, vol. 2(2), pages 95-112, June.
  27. Guiso, Luigi & Sapienza, Paola & Zingales, Luigi, 2005. "Trusting the Stock Market," CEPR Discussion Papers 5288, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  28. Philippe Aghion & Yann Algan & Pierre Cahuc & Andrei Shleifer, 2009. "Regulation and Distrust," NBER Working Papers 14648, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  29. John F. Helliwell & Shun Wang, 2010. "Trust and Well-being," NBER Working Papers 15911, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  30. Christian Bjørnskov & Gert Svendsen, 2013. "Does social trust determine the size of the welfare state? Evidence using historical identification," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 157(1), pages 269-286, October.
  31. Crowe, Christopher & Meade, Ellen E., 2008. "Central bank independence and transparency: Evolution and effectiveness," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 24(4), pages 763-777, December.
  32. Hayo, Bernd & Hefeker, Carsten, 2002. "Reconsidering central bank independence," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 18(4), pages 653-674, November.
  33. Betsey Stevenson & Justin Wolfers, 2011. "Trust in public institutions over the business cycle," Working Paper Series 2011-11, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  34. Guillermo Vuletin & Ling Zhu, 2011. "Replacing a “Disobedient” Central Bank Governor with a “Docile” One: A Novel Measure of Central Bank Independence and Its Effect on Inflation," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 43(6), pages 1185-1215, 09.
  35. Marco Arnone & Bernard J Laurens & Jean-Fran�ois Segalotto & Martin Sommer, 2009. "Central Bank Autonomy: Lessons from Global Trends," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 56(2), pages 263-296, June.
  36. repec:tpr:qjecon:v:112:y:1997:i:4:p:1251-88 is not listed on IDEAS
  37. Axel Dreher & Jakob de Haan & Jan-Egbert Sturm, 2007. "Does High Inflation Cause Central Bankers to Lose their Job? Evidence Based on a New Data Set," CESifo Working Paper Series 2045, CESifo Group Munich.
  38. James C. Cox & Elinor Ostrom, & James M. Walker & Antonio Jamie Castillo & Eric Coleman & Robert Holahan & Michael Schoon & Brian Steed, 2009. "Trust in Private and Common Property Experiments," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 75(4), pages 957-975, April.
  39. Daunfeldt, Sven-Olov & de Luna, Xavier, 2002. "Central Bank Independence and Price Stability: Evidence from 23 OECD-countries," Umeå Economic Studies 589, Umeå University, Department of Economics, revised 12 Jun 2003.
  40. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1977. "Rules Rather Than Discretion: The Inconsistency of Optimal Plans," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 473-91, June.
  41. Brumm, Harold J., 2006. "The effect of central bank independence on inflation in developing countries," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 90(2), pages 189-193, February.
  42. Berggren, Niclas & Elinder, Mikael & Jordahl, Henrik, 2007. "Trust and Growth: A Shaky Relationship," Working Paper Series 705, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
  43. Christian Bjørnskov, 2010. "How does social trust lead to better governance? An attempt to separate electoral and bureaucratic mechanisms," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 144(1), pages 323-346, July.
  44. Michael Naef & Jürgen Schupp, 2009. "Measuring Trust: Experiments and Surveys in Contrast and Combination," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 167, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
  45. Eijffinger, Sylvester C. W. & Hoeberichts, Marco, 2000. "Central Bank accountability and transparency: theory and some evidence," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2000,06, Deutsche Bundesbank, Research Centre.
  46. Jan-Egbert Sturm & Jakob de Haan, 2001. "Inflation in Developing Countries: Does Central Bank Independence Matter?," CESifo Working Paper Series 511, CESifo Group Munich.
  47. Brumm, Harold J, 2000. "Inflation and Central Bank Independence: Conventional Wisdom Redux," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 32(4), pages 807-19, November.
  48. Hayo, Bernd, 1998. "Inflation culture, central bank independence and price stability," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 241-263, May.
  49. Christian Bjørnskov, 2007. "Determinants of generalized trust: A cross-country comparison," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 130(1), pages 1-21, January.
  50. Sachsida, Adolfo & Divino, Jose Angelo & Cajueiro, Daniel Oliveira, 2011. "Inflation, unemployment, and the time consistency of the US monetary policy," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 22(2), pages 173-179, June.
  51. Jeroen Klomp & Jakob Haan, 2010. "Central bank independence and inflation revisited," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 144(3), pages 445-457, September.
  52. repec:tpr:qjecon:v:100:y:1985:i:4:p:1169-89 is not listed on IDEAS
  53. de Haan, Jakob & van 't Hag, Gert Jan, 1995. " Variation in Central Bank Independence across Countries: Some Provisional Empirical Evidence," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 85(3-4), pages 335-51, December.
  54. Dreher, Axel & Sturm, Jan-Egbert & Haan, Jakob de, 2010. "When is a central bank governor replaced? Evidence based on a new data set," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 766-781, September.
  55. Bennett T. McCallum, 1996. "Crucial Issues Concerning Central Bank Independence," NBER Working Papers 5597, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  56. Michael Berlemann, 2005. "Time inconsistency of monetary policy: Empirical evidence from polls," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 125(1), pages 1-15, July.
  57. de Jong, Eelke, 2002. "Why are price stability and statutory independence of central banks negatively correlated? The role of culture," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 18(4), pages 675-694, November.
  58. Paolo Pinotti, 2012. "Trust, Regulation and Market Failures," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 94(3), pages 650-658, August.
  59. Carmignani Fabrizio & Colombo Emilio & Tirelli Patrizio, 2008. "Economic and Socio-Political Determinants of de Facto Monetary Institutions and Inflationary Outcomes," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 8(1), pages 1-29, November.
  60. Klomp, Jeroen & de Haan, Jakob, 2010. "Do central bank law reforms affect the term in office of central bank governors?," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 106(3), pages 219-222, March.
  61. Silvia Ferrari & Francisco Cribari-Neto, 2004. "Beta Regression for Modelling Rates and Proportions," Journal of Applied Statistics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 31(7), pages 799-815.
  62. Bergh, Andreas, 2011. "The Rise, Fall and Revival of a Capitalist Welfare State: What are the Policy Lessons from Sweden," Working Paper Series 873, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
  63. Moser, Peter, 1999. "Checks and balances, and the supply of central bank independence," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 43(8), pages 1569-1593, August.
  64. Forder, James, 1998. "The case for an independent European central bank: A reassessment of evidence and sources," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 14(1), pages 53-71, February.
  65. Andreas Bergh & Christian Bjørnskov, 2011. "Historical Trust Levels Predict the Current Size of the Welfare State," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 64(1), pages 1-19, 02.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:hhs:huiwps:0066. 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: (Helena Nilsson)

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 references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link 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 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.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.