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Steffen Osterloh

21 September 2021
OCCASIONAL PAPER SERIES - No. 275
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Abstract
This report discusses the role of the European Union’s full employment objective in the conduct of the ECB’s monetary policy. It first reviews a range of indicators of full employment, highlights the heterogeneity of labour market outcomes within different groups in the population and across countries, and documents the flatness of the Phillips curve in the euro area. In this context, it is stressed that labour market structures and trend labour market outcomes are primarily determined by national economic policies. The report then recalls that, in many circumstances, inflation and employment move together and pursuing price stability is conducive to supporting employment. However, in response to economic shocks that give rise to a temporary trade-off between employment and inflation stabilisation, the ECB’s medium-term orientation in pursuing price stability is shown to provide flexibility to contribute to the achievement of the EU’s full employment objective. Regarding the conduct of monetary policy in a low interest rate environment, model-based simulations suggest that history-dependent policy approaches − which have been proposed to overcome lasting shortfalls of inflation due to the effective lower bound on nominal interest rates by a more persistent policy response to disinflationary shocks − can help to bring employment closer to full employment, even though their effectiveness depends on the strength of the postulated expectations channels. Finally, the importance of employment income and wealth inequality in the transmission of monetary policy strengthens the case for more persistent or forceful easing policies (in pursuit of price stability) when interest rates are constrained by their lower bound.
JEL Code
E52 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Monetary Policy
E24 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Consumption, Saving, Production, Investment, Labor Markets, and Informal Economy→Employment, Unemployment, Wages, Intergenerational Income Distribution, Aggregate Human Capital
24 June 2021
ECONOMIC BULLETIN - BOX
Economic Bulletin Issue 4, 2021
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Abstract
This box examines the fiscal policy developments outlined in the 2021 stability programmes.
JEL Code
E62 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook→Fiscal Policy
H6 : Public Economics→National Budget, Deficit, and Debt
2 February 2021
ECONOMIC BULLETIN - ARTICLE
Economic Bulletin Issue 1, 2021
Last updated on 10 February 2021
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Abstract
Euro area countries have relied extensively on fiscal policy to counter the harmful impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic on their economies. They have implemented a broad range of measures, some with an immediate budgetary impact and others, such as liquidity measures, which, in principle, are not expected to cause an immediate deterioration in the fiscal outlook. Since all euro area countries were hit by the economic shock largely through the same channels, their fiscal responses in the early stages of the crisis were similar in terms of the instruments used. Fiscal emergency packages were mostly aimed at limiting the economic fallout from containment measures through direct measures to protect firms and workers in the affected industries. Simultaneously, extensive liquidity support measures in the form of tax deferrals and State guarantees were announced to help firms particularly impacted by the containment policies to avoid liquidity shortages. In order to support the recovery, fiscal policy needs to provide targeted and mostly temporary stimulus, tailored to the specific characteristics of the crisis and countries’ fiscal positions. Government investments, complemented by the Next Generation EU package, and accompanied by appropriate structural policies, should play a major role in this respect.
JEL Code
H6 : Public Economics→National Budget, Deficit, and Debt
H1 : Public Economics→Structure and Scope of Government
H5 : Public Economics→National Government Expenditures and Related Policies
7 January 2021
ECONOMIC BULLETIN - BOX
Economic Bulletin Issue 8, 2020
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Abstract
This box examines the fiscal policy recommendations addressed to the euro area countries against the background of the COVID-19 crisis.
JEL Code
E62 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook→Fiscal Policy
H6 : Public Economics→National Budget, Deficit, and Debt
26 March 2020
ECONOMIC BULLETIN - BOX
Economic Bulletin Issue 2, 2020
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Abstract
This box assesses the impact of fiscal measures to address climate change on growth and inflation over the March 2020 ECB staff projection horizon. Policies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the EU comprise: (a) the EU Emissions Trading System (ETS) and (b) national measures in sectors which are not covered by the ETS. Overall, the baseline assumes some impact of climate measures on prices related to the German climate package, while the assumed impact of measures in other countries is limited.
JEL Code
E3 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles
Q58 : Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics, Environmental and Ecological Economics→Environmental Economics→Government Policy
E62 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook→Fiscal Policy