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Monetary Ease: A Factor behind Financial Crises? Some Evidence from OECD Countries

  • Ahrend, Rudiger

This paper addresses the question of whether and how easy monetary policy may lead to excesses in financial and real asset markets and ultimately result in financial dislocation. It presents evidence suggesting that periods when short-term interest rates have been persistently and significantly below what Taylor rules would prescribe are correlated with increases in asset prices, especially as regards housing, though no systematic effects are identified on equity markets. Significant asset price increases, however, can also occur when interest rates are in line with Taylor rules, associated with periods of financial deregulation and/or innovation. The paper argues that accommodating monetary policy over the period 2002-2005, in combination with rapid financial market innovation, would seem in retrospect to have been among the factors behind the run-up in asset prices and financial imbalances -- the (partial) unwinding of which helped trigger the 2007/08 financial market turmoil.

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File URL: http://www.economics-ejournal.org/economics/discussionpapers/2008-44
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Paper provided by Kiel Institute for the World Economy in its series Economics Discussion Papers with number 2008-44.

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Date of creation: 2008
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Handle: RePEc:zbw:ifwedp:7465
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  1. Peter Hoeller & David Rae, 2007. "Housing Markets and Adjustment in Monetary Union," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 550, OECD Publishing.
  2. Rudiger Ahrend & Jens Arnold & Fabrice Murtin, 2009. "Prudential Regulation and Competition in Financial Markets," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 735, OECD Publishing.
  3. DETKEN Carsten & SMETS Frank, . "Asset Price Booms and Monetary Policy," EcoMod2003 330700042, EcoMod.
  4. Stephen G. Cecchetti, 2008. "Measuring the Macroeconomic Risks Posed by Asset Price Booms," NBER Chapters, in: Asset Prices and Monetary Policy, pages 9-43 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. David Rae & Paul van den Noord, 2006. "Ireland's Housing Boom: What has Driven it and Have Prices Overshot?," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 492, OECD Publishing.
  6. Ahrend, Rudiger & Arnold, Jens & Murtin, Fabrice, 2009. "Have more strictly regulated banking systems fared better during the recent financial crisis?," MPRA Paper 20135, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  7. John B. Taylor, 2007. "Housing and Monetary Policy," NBER Working Papers 13682, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Nigel Pain & Isabell Koske & Marte Sollie, 2006. "Globalisation and Inflation in the OECD Economies," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 524, OECD Publishing.
  9. Del Negro, Marco & Otrok, Christopher, 2007. "99 Luftballons: Monetary policy and the house price boom across U.S. states," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(7), pages 1962-1985, October.
  10. Rudiger Ahrend & Boris Cournède & Robert W.R. Price, 2008. "Monetary Policy, Market Excesses and Financial Turmoil," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 597, OECD Publishing.
  11. Nathalie Girouard & Mike Kennedy & Paul van den Noord & Christophe André, 2006. "Recent House Price Developments: The Role of Fundamentals," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 475, OECD Publishing.
  12. Oecd, 2006. "Are House Prices Nearing a Peak?: A Probit Analysis for 17 OECD Countries," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 488, OECD Publishing.
  13. Taylor, John B., 1993. "Discretion versus policy rules in practice," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 195-214, December.
  14. Enrica Detragiache & Abdul Abiad & Thierry Tressel, 2008. "A New Database of Financial Reforms," IMF Working Papers 08/266, International Monetary Fund.
  15. Burkhard Drees & Ceyla Pazarbasioglu, 1995. "The Nordic Banking Crises; Pitfalls in Financial Liberalization?," IMF Working Papers 95/61, International Monetary Fund.
  16. Ben S. Bernanke & Cara S. Lown, 1991. "The Credit Crunch," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 22(2), pages 205-248.
  17. Boris Cournède & Rudiger Ahrend & Robert W.R. Price, 2008. "Have Long-term Financial Trends Changed the Transmission of Monetary Policy?," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 634, OECD Publishing.
  18. Rudiger Ahrend & Pietro Catte & Robert W.R. Price, 2006. "Factors Behind Low Long-Term Interest Rates," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 490, OECD Publishing.
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