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Why should central banks be independent?

  • Harashima, Taiji

Most explanations for the necessity of an independent central bank rely on the time-inconsistency model and therefore assume that governments are weak, foolish, or untruthful and tend to cheat people. The model in this paper indicates, however, that an independent central bank is not necessary because governments are weak or foolish. Central banks must be independent because governments are economic Leviathans. Only by severing the link between the political will of a Leviathan government and economic activities is inflation perfectly guaranteed not to accelerate. A truly independent central bank is necessary because it severs this link.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 1838.

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Date of creation: 15 Jan 2007
Date of revision: 19 Feb 2007
Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:1838
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  1. Woodford, Michael, 2001. "Fiscal Requirements for Price Stability," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 33(3), pages 669-728, August.
  2. Kenneth Rogoff, 1985. "The Optimal Degree of Commitment to an Intermediate Monetary Target," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 100(4), pages 1169-1189.
  3. Carlo A. Favero, . "Macroeconomic stability and the preferences of the Fed. A formal analysis, 1961-98," Working Papers 200, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
  4. 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.
  5. 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.
  6. Christopher A. Sims, 2001. "Fiscal consequences for Mexico of adopting the dollar," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, pages 597-625.
  7. Richard Clarida & Jordi Gali & Mark Gertler, 1998. "Monetary Policy Rules and Macroeconomic Stability: Evidence and Some Theory," NBER Working Papers 6442, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. John H. Cochrane, 2000. "Money as Stock: Price Level Determination with no Money Demand," NBER Working Papers 7498, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Lawrence J. Christiano & Terry J. Fitzgerald, 2000. "Understanding the Fiscal Theory of the Price Level," NBER Working Papers 7668, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Lars E. O. Svensson, 2003. "What is Wrong with Taylor Rules? Using Judgment in Monetary Policy through Targeting Rules," NBER Working Papers 9421, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Cochrane, John H, 2001. "Long-Term Debt and Optimal Policy in the Fiscal Theory of the Price Level," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 69(1), pages 69-116, January.
  12. Sims, Christopher A., 1998. "Econometric implications of the government budget constraint," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 83(1-2), pages 9-19.
  13. Taiji Harashima, 2005. "The Cause of the Great Inflation: Interactions between the Government and the Monetary Policymakers," Macroeconomics 0510026, EconWPA, revised 31 Oct 2005.
  14. Barro, Robert J & Gordon, David B, 1983. "A Positive Theory of Monetary Policy in a Natural Rate Model," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 91(4), pages 589-610, August.
  15. Harashima, Taiji, 2006. "The Sustainability of Budget Deficits in an Inflationary Economy," MPRA Paper 905, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  16. Anthony Downs, 1957. "An Economic Theory of Political Action in a Democracy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 65, pages 135.
  17. Taiji Harashima, 2004. "The Ultimate Source of Inflation: A Microfoundation of the Fiscal Theory of the Price Level," Macroeconomics 0409018, EconWPA, revised 23 Sep 2004.
  18. Leeper, Eric M., 1991. "Equilibria under 'active' and 'passive' monetary and fiscal policies," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 129-147, February.
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