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Peter Backé

1 April 2001
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 61
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Abstract
Diffusion indexes based on dynamic factors have recently been advocated by Stock and Watson (1998), and further used to perform forecasting tests by the same authors on US data. This technique is explored for the euro area using a multi-country data set and a broad array of variables, in order to test the inflation forecasting performance of extracted factors at the aggregate euro area level. First, a description of factors extracted from different data sets is performed using a number of different approaches. Conclusions reached are that nominal phenomena in the original variables might be well captured in-sample using the factor approach. Out-of-sample tests have more ambiguous interpretation, as factors seem to be good leading indicators of inflation, but the comparative advantage of the factors is less clear. Nevertheless, alternative indicators such as unemployment or money growth do not outperform them
JEL Code
C53 : Mathematical and Quantitative Methods→Econometric Modeling→Forecasting and Prediction Methods, Simulation Methods
E31 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Price Level, Inflation, Deflation
E37 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Forecasting and Simulation: Models and Applications
1 April 2001
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 60
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Abstract
This paper applies the 'diffusion indices' approach proposed by Stock and Watson [1998] to the euro area. Following their methodology a set of factors are extracted from a balanced and unbalanced panel dataset comprising nominal variables for 11 countries of the euro area. The estimated factors appear to be fairly stable over time. It is also shown that the first factor is cointegrated with area wide HICP and private consumption deflator supporting the idea that it represents 'a common trend of inflation' for the euro area. The other factors, which are stationary instead, seem to capture dispersion of inflation across countries. There is moreover evidence of unilateral causality from the first factor with respect to HICP, suggesting that this factor could be valuably employed in forecasting euro area inflation
JEL Code
E52 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Monetary Policy
E58 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Central Banks and Their Policies
1 January 2002
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 114
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Abstract
Drawing on recent Eurosystem research that uses a range of econometric techniques and a number of new data sets, we propose a comprehensive description of how monetary policy affects the euro area economy. We focus mainly on three questions: (1) what are the stylised facts concerning the transmission of monetary policy for the area as a whole and for individual countries? (2) can the 'classic' interest rate channel (IRC) alone, without capital market imperfections, explain these facts? (3) if not, is the bank lending channel a likely candidate to complete the story? We find plausible euro-area wide monetary policy responses for prices and output that are similar to those generally reported for the US. However, investment (relative to consumption) seems to play a larger role in euro area monetary policy transmission than in the US. We cannot reject the hypothesis that the IRC completely characterises transmission in a few countries, and estimate it to be substantial in almost all. Where the IRC is not dominant, there is normally some direct evidence supporting the presence of a bank lending channel (or other financial transmission channel). The cases where financial effects appear important can be further split according to whether they primarily relate to consumption or investment
JEL Code
E52 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Monetary Policy
E58 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Central Banks and Their Policies
E44 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Money and Interest Rates→Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
Network
Eurosystem Monetary Transmission Network
1 February 2002
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 129
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Abstract
This paper sets out to investigate the role of additive uncertainty under plausible non-standard central bank loss functions over future inflation. Building on a substantial body of evidence in the economic psychology literature, this paper postulates (i) period-by-period loss functions that are non-convex, I.e. displaying diminishing or non-increasing sensitivity to losses, and (ii) non-linear weighing of probabilities, hence departing from the expected utility paradigm. The main conclusion of the study is that if the additive uncertainty is caused by a non-normal distributed additive shock, for instance if the probability distribution of the shock is skewed, then with these departures from the quadratic function the principle of certainty equivalence does not hold anymore. Thus, it appears that with additive uncertainty of the non-normal type the assumption of a quadratic loss function for the central banker may not be as innocuous as it is commonly regarded.
JEL Code
E52 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Monetary Policy
E58 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Central Banks and Their Policies
1 February 2002
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 122
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Abstract
This paper provides an overview of the currently available evidence on the importance of information and communication technologies (ICT) for developments in productivity growth in the euro area. On the basis of the available data, there is evidence of an increased contribution of ICT to economic growth both in terms of production and investment in the second half of the 1990s. However, there is little, if any, evidence of significant positive spillover effects from the use of ICT to overall productivity growth. This implies that there is no reason to believe that potential output growth in the euro area has increased significantly in recent years on account of new technologies
JEL Code
E22 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Consumption, Saving, Production, Investment, Labor Markets, and Informal Economy→Capital, Investment, Capacity
L63 : Industrial Organization→Industry Studies: Manufacturing→Microelectronics, Computers, Communications Equipment
L86 : Industrial Organization→Industry Studies: Services→Information and Internet Services, Computer Software
O3 : Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth→Technological Change, Research and Development, Intellectual Property Rights
O47 : Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth→Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity→Measurement of Economic Growth, Aggregate Productivity, Cross-Country Output Convergence
1 March 2002
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 132
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Abstract
This paper examines inflation dynamics in the current EU-accession countries in central and eastern Europe, focusing particularly on the determinants of 'dual inflation', that is, diverging inflation rates for tradable and non-tradable goods. The paper draws on the recently published data for the Harmonized Index of Consumer Prices (HICP) of the Accession countries and, indeed, finds evidence of ' dual inflation' in these economies. To test empirically for underlying determinants, the paper borrows from the recently developed New Phillips curve literature. Overall, domestic factors have systematically a stronger impact upon non-tradable goods inflation whereas international factors have a stronger impact over tradable goods. Furthermore, the results point to the possibly very different effects of exchange rate regimes over tradable and non-tradable goods inflation. On the whole, the findings suggest that the Balassa-Samuelson effect is not a prominent factor behind the current 'experience' of dual inflation in these countries.
JEL Code
E31 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Price Level, Inflation, Deflation
E58 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Central Banks and Their Policies
F41 : International Economics→Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance→Open Economy Macroeconomics
P24 : Economic Systems→Socialist Systems and Transitional Economies→National Income, Product, and Expenditure, Money, Inflation
1 September 2002
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 177
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Abstract
Nominal rigidities due to menu costs have become a standard element in closed economy macroeconomic modelling. The 'New Open Economy Macroeconomics' literature has investigated the implications of nominal rigidities in an open economy context and found that the currency in which prices are set has significant macroeconomic and policy implications. In this paper we solve for the optimal invoicing choice by integrating this micoeconomic decision at the firm level into a general equilibrium open economy model. Strategic interactions between firms play a critical role in the analysis. We find that the less competition firms face in foreign markets, as reflected in market share and product differentiation, the more likely they will price in their own currency. We also show that when a set of countries forms a monetary union, the new currency is likely to be used more extensively in trade than the sum of the currencies it replaces.
JEL Code
F31 : International Economics→International Finance→Foreign Exchange
F41 : International Economics→Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance→Open Economy Macroeconomics
Network
International research forum on monetary policy
1 January 2003
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 209
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Abstract
This paper derives a general framework for collateral risk control determination in repurchase transactions or repos. The objective is to treat consistently heterogeneous collateral so that the collateral taker has a similar risk exposure whatever the collateral pledged. The framework measures the level of risk with the probability of incurring a loss higher than a pre-specified level given two well-known parameters used to manage the intrinsic risk of collateral: marking to market and haircuts. It allows for the analysis in a self-contained closed form of the way in which different relevant factors interact in the risk control of collateral (e.g. marking to market frequency, level of volatility of interest rates, time to capture and liquidity risk, probability of default of counterparty, etc.). The framework, which combines the recent theoretical literature on credit and interest risk, provides an alternative quantifiable and objective approach to the existing more ad-hoc rule-based methods used in hair cut determination.
JEL Code
E50 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→General
E58 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Central Banks and Their Policies
G21 : Financial Economics→Financial Institutions and Services→Banks, Depository Institutions, Micro Finance Institutions, Mortgages
G10 : Financial Economics→General Financial Markets→General
1 April 2003
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 223
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Abstract
We study optimal nominal demand policy in an economy with monopolistic competition and flexible prices when firms have imperfect common knowledge about the shocks hitting the economy. Parametrizing firms' information imperfections by a (Shannon) capacity parameter that constrains the amount of information flowing to each firm, we study how policy that minimizes a quadratic objective in output and prices depends on this parameter. When price setting decisions of firms are strategic complements, for a large range of capacity values optimal policy nominally accommodates mark-up shocks in the short-run. This finding is robust to the policy maker observing shocks imperfectly or being uncertain about firms' capacity parameter. With persistent mark-up shocks accommodation may increase in the medium term, but decreases in the long-run thereby generating a hump-shaped price response and a slow reduction in output. Instead, when prices are strategic substitutes, policy tends to react restrictively to mark-up shocks. However, rational expectations equilibria may then not exist with small amounts of imperfect common knowledge.
JEL Code
E31 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Price Level, Inflation, Deflation
E52 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Monetary Policy
D82 : Microeconomics→Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty→Asymmetric and Private Information, Mechanism Design
1 April 2003
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 222
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Abstract
We estimate a forward-looking New Keynesian Phillips Curve (NKPC) for the U.S. using data from the Survey of Professional Forecasters as proxy for expected inflation. We obtain significant and plausible estimates for the structural parameters of the NKPC (the discount factor and the share of firms adjusting prices) independent from whether output or unit labor costs are used as a measure of marginal costs. Survey expectations suggest that the usual identification of expectations exploiting orthogonality of forecast errors with respect to output is severely distorted, which explains why the NKPC estimated with survey data performs much better than under the assumption of rational expectations. We also find that lagged inflation enters the price equation significantly, even when controlling for its ability to predict expectations. This suggests a role for lagged inflation beyond that of capturing non-rationalities in expectations. When estimating a Phillips curve where lagged inflation enters due to price indexation by non-reoptimizing firms, we find that rejection of the coefficient restrictions depends on the measure of marginal costs used.
JEL Code
E31 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Price Level, Inflation, Deflation
1 July 2003
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 240
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Abstract
We examine the euro area monetary policy transmission process using post-1999 data, with two main questions in mind: has it changed after
JEL Code
E43 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Money and Interest Rates→Interest Rates: Determination, Term Structure, and Effects
E52 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Monetary Policy
G21 : Financial Economics→Financial Institutions and Services→Banks, Depository Institutions, Micro Finance Institutions, Mortgages
1 August 2003
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 250
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Abstract
In this paper we first explore the impact of nominal and real persistence on the transmission process of various shocks in an estimated DSGE model of euro area. We then analyse its impact on optimal monetary policy and investigate the performance of various monetary policies when the policy maker is uncertain about the degree of nominal and real persistence.
JEL Code
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
29 February 2004
OCCASIONAL PAPER SERIES - No. 10
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Abstract
This paper reviews the strategies announced by the ten countries joining the European Union in May 2004 with regard to their intentions for participation in ERM II and the adoption of the euro. The paper examines the economic rationale of the monetary integration strategies declared by most acceding countries with a view to identifying also their potential risks. It does so by making use of several different approaches, including a short review of nominal convergence and a more extensive discussion from an optimum currency area perspective. An important part of the analysis is devoted to the implications of real convergence – i.e. catching-up growth in income and adjustment of the real economic structures towards those prevailing in the euro area – on the patterns of economic dynamics in acceding countries. Other aspects covered are the risks for external competitiveness in the convergence process and the appropriate pace of fiscal consolidation.
8 March 2004
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 317
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Abstract
Among the harmful effects of inflation, the negative consequences of inflation volatility are of particular concern. These include higher risk premia, hedging costs and unforeseen redistribution of wealth. This paper presents panel estimations for a sample of OECD countries which suggest that activist fiscal policies may have an important impact on CPI inflation volatility. Major results are robust for unconditional and conditional inflation volatility, the latter derived from country-specific GARCH models, and across different data frequencies, time periods and econometric methodologies. From a policy perspective, these results point to the possibility of further destabilising effects of discretionary fiscal policies, in addition to their potential to destabilise output.
JEL Code
E31 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Price Level, Inflation, Deflation
E62 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook→Fiscal Policy
4 July 2006
OCCASIONAL PAPER SERIES - No. 48
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Abstract
This paper - based on a report by a Task Force established by the International Relations Committee (IRC) of the European System of Central Banks (ESCB) - reviews macroeconomic and financial stability challenges for acceding (Bulgaria and Romania) and candidate countries (Croatia and Turkey). In an environment characterised by strong growth and capital inflows, the main macroeconomic challenges relate to the recent pick-up of inflation and the large and widening current account deficits. Moreover, rapid credit growth has been a recent feature of financial development in all countries and thus constitutes the main financial stability challenge. In general, monetary authorities have responded to these challenges by tightening monetary conditions and prudential standards, with concrete measures also reflecting the different monetary and exchange rate regimes in the region. The paper also highlights four specific features of fiancial development in the countries under review, namely the dominance of banks in financial intermediation, the strong participation of foreign-owned banks, the widespread use of foreign currencies and the strengthening of supervisory frameworks.
JEL Code
E65 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook→Studies of Particular Policy Episodes
G21 : Financial Economics→Financial Institutions and Services→Banks, Depository Institutions, Micro Finance Institutions, Mortgages
G38 : Financial Economics→Corporate Finance and Governance→Government Policy and Regulation
O16 : Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth→Economic Development→Financial Markets, Saving and Capital Investment, Corporate Finance and Governance
P27 : Economic Systems→Socialist Systems and Transitional Economies→Performance and Prospects
30 October 2006
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 687
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Abstract
This paper analyzes the equilibrium level of private credit to GDP in 11 Central and Eastern European countries in order to see whether the high credit growth recently observed in some of these countries led to above equilibrium private credit-to-GDP levels. We use estimation results obtained for a panel of small open OECD economies (out-of-sample panel) to derive the equilibrium credit level for a panel of transition economies (in-sample panel). We opt for this (out-of-sample) approach because the coefficient estimates for transition economies are fairly unstable. We show that there is a large amount of uncertainty to determine the equilibrium level of private credit. Yet our results indicate that a number of countries are very close or even above the estimated equilibrium levels, whereas others are still well below the equilibrium level.
JEL Code
C31 : Mathematical and Quantitative Methods→Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models, Multiple Variables→Cross-Sectional Models, Spatial Models, Treatment Effect Models, Quantile Regressions, Social Interaction Models
C33 : Mathematical and Quantitative Methods→Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models, Multiple Variables→Panel Data Models, Spatio-temporal Models
E44 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Money and Interest Rates→Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
G21 : Financial Economics→Financial Institutions and Services→Banks, Depository Institutions, Micro Finance Institutions, Mortgages
8 September 2008
OCCASIONAL PAPER SERIES - No. 95
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Abstract
This paper reviews financial stability challenges in the EU candidate countries Croatia, Turkey and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. It examines the financial sectors in these three economies, which, while at very different stages of development and embedded in quite diverse economic settings, are all in a process of rapid financial deepening. This manifests itself most clearly in the rapid pace of growth in credit to the private sector. This process of financial deepening is largely a natural and welcome catching-up phenomenon, but it has also increased the credit risks borne by the banking sectors in the three economies. These credit risks are compounded by the widespread use of foreign currency-denominated or -indexed loans, leaving unhedged bank customers exposed to potential swings in exchange rates or foreign interest rates. Moreover, these financial risks form part of a broader nexus of vulnerabilities in the economies concerned, in particular the external vulnerabilities arising from increasing private sector external indebtedness. That said, the paper also finds that the authorities in the three countries have taken several policy actions to reduce these financial and external vulnerabilities and to strengthen the resilience of the financial sectors.
JEL Code
F32 : International Economics→International Finance→Current Account Adjustment, Short-Term Capital Movements
F41 : International Economics→Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance→Open Economy Macroeconomics
G21 : Financial Economics→Financial Institutions and Services→Banks, Depository Institutions, Micro Finance Institutions, Mortgages
G28 : Financial Economics→Financial Institutions and Services→Government Policy and Regulation
Network
Eurosystem Monetary Transmission Network