Does Monetary Policy Help Least Those Who Need It Most?
We estimate the impact of U.S. monetary policy on the cross-sectional distribution of state economic activity for a 35-year panel. Our results indicate that the effects of policy have a significant history dependence, in that relatively slow growth regions contract more following contractionarymonetary shocks. Moreover, policy is asymmetric, in that expansionary shocks have less of a beneficial impact upon relatively slow growth areas. As a result, we conclude that monetary policy on average widens the dispersion of growth rates among U.S. states, and those locations initially at the low end of the cross-sectional distribution benefit least from any given change inmonetary policy.
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