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Identification and the Liquidity Effect of a Monetary Policy Shock

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  • Lawrence J. Christiano
  • Martin Eichenbaum

Abstract

Conventional wisdom holds that unanticipated expansionary monetary policy shocks cause transient but persistent decreases in real and nominal interest rates. However a number of econometric studies argue that the evidence favors the opposite view, namely that these shocks actually raise, rather than lower, short term interest rates. We show that this conclusion is not robust to the measure of monetary aggregate used or to the assumptions made to identify monetary policy disturbances. For example, when our analysis is done using non borrowed reserves, we find strong evidence in favor of the conventional view. Existing challenges to the conventional view lack credibility not just because of their fragility. They are based upon measures of policy disturbances which generate seemingly implausible implications about things other than interest rates.

Suggested Citation

  • Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum, 1991. "Identification and the Liquidity Effect of a Monetary Policy Shock," NBER Working Papers 3920, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:3920
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    7. Ben S. Bernanke, 1990. "On the predictive power of interest rates and interest rate spreads," New England Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, issue Nov, pages 51-68.
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    9. Cochrane, John H, 1989. "The Return of the Liquidity Effect: A Study of the Short-run Relation between Money Growth and Interest Rates," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 7(1), pages 75-83, January.
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    11. Mishkin, Frederic S, 1982. " Monetary Policy and Short-Term Interest Rates: An Efficient Markets-Rational Expectations Approach," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 37(1), pages 63-72, March.
    12. Stock, James H. & Watson, Mark W., 1989. "Interpreting the evidence on money-income causality," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 161-181, January.
    13. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1990. "Liquidity and interest rates," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 50(2), pages 237-264, April.
    14. James H. Stock & Mark W. Watson, 1989. "New Indexes of Coincident and Leading Economic Indicators," NBER Chapters,in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1989, Volume 4, pages 351-409 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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