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Central Bank Credibility: An Historical and Quantitative Exploration

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  • Michael D. Bordo
  • Pierre L. Siklos

Abstract

In this paper we provide empirical measures of central bank credibility and augment these with historical narratives from eleven countries. To the extent we are able to apply reliable institutional information we can also indirectly assess their role in influencing the credibility of the monetary authority. We focus on measures of inflation expectations, the mean reversion properties of inflation, and indicators of exchange rate risk. In addition we place some emphasis on whether credibility is particularly vulnerable during financial crises, whether its evolution is a function of the type of crisis or its kind (i.e., currency, banking, sovereign debt crises). We find credibility changes over time are frequent and can be significant. Nevertheless, no robust empirical connection between the size of an economic shock (e.g., the Great Depression) and loss of credibility is found. Second, the frequency with which the world economy experiences economic and financial crises, institutional factors (i.e., the quality of governance) plays an important role in preventing a loss of credibility. Third, credibility shocks are dependent on the type of monetary policy regime in place. Finally, credibility is most affected by whether the shock can be associated with policy errors.

Suggested Citation

  • Michael D. Bordo & Pierre L. Siklos, 2015. "Central Bank Credibility: An Historical and Quantitative Exploration," NBER Working Papers 20824, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:20824
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Jose A. Lopez & Kris James Mitchener, 2018. "Uncertainty and Hyperinflation: European Inflation Dynamics after World War I," NBER Working Papers 24624, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Pierre L. Siklos, 2016. "Forecast Disagreement and the Inflation Outlook: New International Evidence," IMES Discussion Paper Series 16-E-03, Institute for Monetary and Economic Studies, Bank of Japan.
    3. In Do Hwang, 2018. "Central Bank Reputation and Inflation-Unemployment Performance: Empirical Evidence from an Executive Survey of 62 Countries," Working Papers 2018-14, Economic Research Institute, Bank of Korea.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C32 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Time-Series Models; Dynamic Quantile Regressions; Dynamic Treatment Effect Models; Diffusion Processes; State Space Models
    • C36 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Instrumental Variables (IV) Estimation
    • E31 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Price Level; Inflation; Deflation
    • E58 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Central Banks and Their Policies
    • N10 - Economic History - - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics; Industrial Structure; Growth; Fluctuations - - - General, International, or Comparative

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