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Stefan Huemer

21 October 2010
Central bank independence is a common feature in advanced economies. Delegation of monetary policy to an independent central bank with a clear mandate for price stability has proven to be successful in keeping a check on inflation and providing a trusted currency. However, it is also a fact that central banks in most countries have regular contacts with the government and cooperate with them on a number of issues. This paper looks into the various forms of cooperation between central banks and governments in the G7. The focus is on those central banks that exercise a monetary policy decision-making function, i.e. the ECB and the central banks of the four G7 countries outside the euro area (the US, UK, Japan and Canada). The paper first reviews the objectives of and arrangements for central bank/government cooperation in the US, UK, Japan and Canada in areas such as monetary policy and its interlink with economic policy; foreign exchange operations and foreign reserve management; international cooperation; payment systems/securities learing and settlement systems; upervision, regulation and financial stability; banknotes and coins; collection of statistics; and the role of fiscal agent for the government. In parallel the paper looks into the objectives of and arrangements for cooperation between the ECB and relevant European counterparts, reflecting the specific European institutional environment characterised by the absence of a
JEL Code
D83 : Microeconomics→Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty→Search, Learning, Information and Knowledge, Communication, Belief
C62 : Mathematical and Quantitative Methods→Mathematical Methods, Programming Models, Mathematical and Simulation Modeling→Existence and Stability Conditions of Equilibrium
E30 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→General
18 June 2013
While there are many methods to measure the competitiveness of an economy, most of these concepts ignore the fact that competitiveness can change because of market processes like wage negotiation but also because of political decision-making. Governments that compete with others for factors of production face the incentive to adjust key policy variables to improve their competitive position. Disentangling market-induced and politics-induced changes in competitiveness is not easy, but strongly warranted given current discussions that some EMU Member States should improve their competitive position within the euro area by adjusting policy variables. Increasing country competitiveness is one of the key objectives currently discussed by policy makers in the context of creating an economic union in the euro area, to complement monetary union. We propose a new competitiveness index that captures the dimensions in which politics can influence competitiveness beyond factor price adjustments. Our index shows that the individual components of institutional competitiveness have developed heterogeneously among EMU Member States. To explain these divergent developments, the uneven integration within the EU Single Market may play a role.
JEL Code
E02 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→General→Institutions and the Macroeconomy
E44 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Money and Interest Rates→Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
F15 : International Economics→Trade→Economic Integration
H11 : Public Economics→Structure and Scope of Government→Structure, Scope, and Performance of Government
N44 : Economic History→Government, War, Law, International Relations, and Regulation→Europe: 1913?
Competitiveness Research Network