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Political Monetary Cycles and a New de facto Ranking of Central Bank Independence

  • Alpanda, Sami
  • Honig, Adam
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    This paper examines the extent to which monetary policy is manipulated for political purposes by testing for the presence of political monetary cycles between 1972 and 2001. This is the first study of its kind to include not only advanced countries but also a large sample of developing nations where these cycles are more likely to exist. We estimate panel regressions of a monetary policy indicator on an election dummy and control variables. We do not find evidence of political monetary cycles in advanced countries but find strong evidence in developing nations. Based on our results, we construct a new de facto ranking of central bank independence derived from the extent to which monetary policy varies with the election cycle. Our ranking of CBI is therefore based on the behavior of central banks during election cycles when their independence is likely to be challenged or their lack of independence is likely to be revealed. The ranking also avoids well-known problems with existing measures of central bank independence.

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    File URL: http://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/5898/1/MPRA_paper_5898.pdf
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    Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 5898.

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    Date of creation: Oct 2007
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    Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:5898
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    1. Leertouwer, Erik & Maier, Philipp, 2001. "Who creates political business cycles: should central banks be blamed?," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 445-463, September.
    2. Frederic S. Mishkin & Niklas J. Westelius, 2008. "Inflation Band Targeting and Optimal Inflation Contracts," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 40(4), pages 557-582, 06.
    3. Burton Abrams & Plamen Iossifov, 2006. "Does the Fed Contribute to a Political Business Cycle?," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 129(3), pages 249-262, December.
    4. Rogoff, Kenneth, 1990. "Equilibrium Political Budget Cycles," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(1), pages 21-36, March.
    5. Ray C. Fair, 1976. "The Effects of Economic Events on Votes for President," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 418, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
    6. Alesina, Alberto & Summers, Lawrence H, 1993. "Central Bank Independence and Macroeconomic Performance: Some Comparative Evidence," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 25(2), pages 151-62, May.
    7. Fischer, Stanley, 1977. "Long-Term Contracts, Rational Expectations, and the Optimal Money Supply Rule," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(1), pages 191-205, February.
    8. Bernard Laurens & Martin Sommer & Marco Arnone & Jean-François Segalotto, 2007. "Central Bank Autonomy; Lessons From Global Trends," IMF Working Papers 07/88, International Monetary Fund.
    9. Carmen M. Reinhart & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 2002. "The Modern History of Exchange Rate Arrangements: A Reinterpretation," NBER Working Papers 8963, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Reinhart, Carmen & Calvo, Guillermo, 2002. "Fear of floating," MPRA Paper 14000, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    11. 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.
    12. Frederic S. Mishkin, 2004. "Can Inflation Targeting Work in Emerging Market Countries?," NBER Working Papers 10646, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    13. 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.
    14. Nordhaus, William D, 1975. "The Political Business Cycle," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 42(2), pages 169-90, April.
    15. Calvo, Guillermo A, 1978. "On the Time Consistency of Optimal Policy in a Monetary Economy," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(6), pages 1411-28, November.
    16. Sturm, Jan-Egbert & Haan, Jakob de, 2001. "Inflation in developing countries: does Central Bank independence matter?," CCSO Working Papers 200101, University of Groningen, CCSO Centre for Economic Research.
    17. 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.
    18. Phelps, Edmund S & Taylor, John B, 1977. "Stabilizing Powers of Monetary Policy under Rational Expectations," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(1), pages 163-90, February.
    19. Clark, William Roberts & Reichert, Usha Nair & Lomas, Sandra Lynn & Parker, Kevin L., 1998. "International and Domestic Constraints on Political Business Cycles in OECD Economies," International Organization, Cambridge University Press, vol. 52(01), pages 87-120, December.
    20. Bernard Laurens & Marco Arnone & Jean-François Segalotto, 2006. "The Measurement of Central Bank Autonomy; Survey of Models, Indicators, and Empirical Evidence," IMF Working Papers 06/227, International Monetary Fund.
    21. Haynes, Stephen E & Stone, Joe A, 1989. "An Integrated Test for Electoral Cycles in the U.S. Economy," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 71(3), pages 426-34, August.
    22. Jan-Egbert Sturm & Jakob de Haan, 2001. "Inflation in Developing Countries: Does Central Bank Independence Matter?," CESifo Working Paper Series 511, CESifo Group Munich.
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