Reflections on the Current Fashion For Central Bank Independence
This paper challenges the time-inconsistency case for central bank independence. It argues that the time-inconsistency literature not only seriously confuses the substance of the rules versus discretion debate, but also posits an implausible view of monetary policy. Most worrisome, the inflationary bias featured prominently in the time-inconsistency literature has encouraged the development of a dangerously one-sided approach to central bank independence that entirely ignores the potential risks involved in maximizing central bankers' latitude for discretion. The analysis shows that a more balanced and symmetric approach to central bank independence is urgently warranted. The views of Maynard Keynes and Milton Friedman are shown to shed some illuminating and disconcerting light on a fashionable free-lunch promise that is based on rather shallow theoretical foundations.
|Date of creation:||09 Aug 2001|
|Date of revision:|
|Note:||Type of Document - Adobe Acrobat PDF; prepared on IBM PC; to print on PostScript; pages: 38; figures: included|
|Contact details of provider:|| Web page: http://econwpa.repec.org|
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Buiter, Willem H, 1981.
"The Superiority of Contingent Rules over Fixed Rules in Models with Rational Expectations,"
Royal Economic Society, vol. 91(363), pages 647-70, September.
- Willem H. Buiter, 1981. "The Superiority of Contingent Rules over Fixed Rules in Models with Rational Expectations," NBER Technical Working Papers 0009, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Alberto Alesina & Nouriel Roubini, 1990.
"Political Cycles in OECD Economies,"
NBER Working Papers
3478, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- 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.
- Fischer, Stanley, 1990. "Rules versus discretion in monetary policy," Handbook of Monetary Economics, in: B. M. Friedman & F. H. Hahn (ed.), Handbook of Monetary Economics, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 21, pages 1155-1184 Elsevier.
- 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.
- 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.
- Clark, Peter B. & Goodhart, Charles A. E. & Huang, Haizhou, 1999.
"Optimal monetary policy rules in a rational expectations model of the Phillips curve,"
Journal of Monetary Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 497-520, April.
- Haizhou Huang & Peter B Clark & Charles Goodhart, 1996. "Optimal Monetary Policy Rules in a Rational Expectations Model of the Phillips Curve," FMG Discussion Papers dp247, Financial Markets Group.
- Marta Campillo & Jeffrey A. Miron, 1996.
"Why Does Inflation Differ Across Countries?,"
NBER Working Papers
5540, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- D. Backus & J. Driffil, 1998.
"Inflation and Reputation,"
Levine's Working Paper Archive
625, David K. Levine.
- Gartner, Manfred, 1999. "The election cycle in the inflation bias: evidence from the G-7 countries," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 705-725, November.
- Jörg Bibow, 2001. "Easy Money through the Back Door: The Markets vs. the ECB," Macroeconomics 0103004, EconWPA.
- Eijffinger, S. & De Hann, J., 1995.
"The Political Economy of Central Bank Independence,"
9587, Tilburg - Center for Economic Research.
- Eijffinger, S-C-W & de Haan, J, 1996. "The Political Economy of Central-Bank Independence," Princeton Studies in International Economics 19, International Economics Section, Departement of Economics Princeton University,.
- Forder, James, 1996. "On the Assessment and Implementation of 'Institutional' Remedies," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 48(1), pages 39-51, January.
- Bean, Charles, 1998. "The New UK Monetary Arrangements: A View from the Literature," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 108(451), pages 1795-1809, November.
- Fry, Maxwell J, 1998. "Assessing Central Bank Independence in Developing Countries: Do Actions Speak Louder Than Words?," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 50(3), pages 512-29, July.
- Guy Debelle & Stanley Fischer, 1994.
"How independent should a central bank be?,"
Working Papers in Applied Economic Theory
94-05, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
- Jeffrey C. Fuhrer, 1997. "Central bank independence and inflation targeting: monetary policy paradigms for the next millenium?," New England Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, issue Jan, pages 19-36.
- Chant, John F & Acheson, Keith, 1973. "Mythology and Central Banking," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 26(2), pages 362-79.
- Alesina, Alberto & Gatti, Roberta, 1995. "Independent Central Banks: Low Inflation at No Cost?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(2), pages 196-200, May.
- Fuhrer, Jeff & Moore, George, 1995.
The Quarterly Journal of Economics,
MIT Press, vol. 110(1), pages 127-59, February.
- Jorg Bibow, 2001. "Easy Money through the Back Door: The Markets vs. the ECB," Economics Working Paper Archive wp_323, Levy Economics Institute.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpma:0108004. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (EconWPA)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.