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Independence Day for the “Old Lady? A Natural Experiment on the Implications of Central Bank Independence

Author

Listed:
  • Jagjit S. Chadha
  • Peter Macmillan

    ()

  • Charles Nolan

    ()

Abstract

Central bank independence is widely thought be a sine qua non of a credible commitment to price stability. The surprise decision by the UK government to grant operational independence to the Bank of England in 1997 affords us a natural experiment with which to gauge the impact on the yield curve from the adoption of central bank independence. We document the extent to which the decision to grant independence was ‘news?and illustrate that the reduction in medium and long term nominal interest rates was some 50 basis points, which we show to be consistent with a sharp increase in policymaker’s aversion to inflation deviations from target. We suggest therefore central bank independence represents one of the clearest signals available to elected politicians about their preferences on the control of inflation.

Suggested Citation

  • Jagjit S. Chadha & Peter Macmillan & Charles Nolan, 2006. "Independence Day for the “Old Lady? A Natural Experiment on the Implications of Central Bank Independence," CDMA Working Paper Series 200602, Centre for Dynamic Macroeconomic Analysis.
  • Handle: RePEc:san:cdmawp:0602
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    File URL: http://www.st-andrews.ac.uk/~wwwecon/CDMA/papers/wp0602.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Svensson, Lars E. O., 1997. "Inflation forecast targeting: Implementing and monitoring inflation targets," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 41(6), pages 1111-1146, June.
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    3. Robertson, D & Symons, J, 1994. "Five Weeks in the Life of the Pound. Interest Rates, Expectations and Sterling's Exit from the ERM," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 56(1), pages 1-12, February.
    4. Robertson, Donald & Symons, James, 1997. "Real Interest Rates and Index-Linked Gilts," The Manchester School of Economic & Social Studies, University of Manchester, vol. 65(1), pages 25-43, January.
    5. Glenn Rudebusch & Lars E.O. Svensson, 1999. "Policy Rules for Inflation Targeting," NBER Chapters,in: Monetary Policy Rules, pages 203-262 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    7. 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 151-162, May.
    8. Tore Ellingsen & Ulf Soderstrom, 2001. "Monetary Policy and Market Interest Rates," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(5), pages 1594-1607, December.
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    10. Cecchetti, Stephen G & McConnell, Margaret M & Perez-Quiros, Gabriel, 2002. "Policymakers' Revealed Preferences and the Output-Inflation Variability Trade-Off: Implications for the European System of Central Banks," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 70(4), pages 596-618, Special I.
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    Cited by:

    1. Jagjit Chadha & Sean Holly, 2006. "Macroeconomic Models and the Yield Curve," Computing in Economics and Finance 2006 105, Society for Computational Economics.
    2. Chadha, Jagjit S. & Holly, Sean, 2010. "Macroeconomic models and the yield curve: An assessment of the fit," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 34(8), pages 1343-1358, August.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Central bank independence; preferences; yield curve.;

    JEL classification:

    • E4 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates
    • E5 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit
    • N2 - Economic History - - Financial Markets and Institutions

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