Managing Monetary Policy Normalization
We propose a new framework for monetary policy analysis to study monetary policy normalization when exiting a liquidity trap. The optimal combination of reserves and interest rate policy requires an increase in liquidity (reserves) a few quarters after the policy rate is set at the effective lower bound. Removal of accommodation requires that quantitative tightening starts before the liftoff of the policy rate. Moreover, the withdrawal of liquidity takes place at a very slow pace relative to the normalization of the policy rate.
Should Emerging Economies Embrace Quantitative Easing during the Pandemic?
Emerging economies are fighting COVID-19 and the economic sudden stop imposed by lockdown policies. Even before COVID-19 took root in emerging economies, however, investors had already started to flee these markets–to a much greater extent than they had at the onset of the 2008 global financial crisis (IMF, 2020; World Bank, 2020). Such sudden stops in capital flows can cause significant drops in economic activity, with recoveries that can take several years to complete (Benigno et al., 2020). Unfortunately, austerity and currency depreciations as enacted during the global financial crisis ...
Uncertainty about Trade Policy Uncertainty
We revisit in this note the macroeconomic impact of the recent rise in trade policy uncertainty. As in the literature, we do find that high trade policy uncertainty can adversely impact domestic and foreign economic activity. In addition, we identify an alternative business sentiment channel that is separate and distinct from the impact of trade policy uncertainty, which provides a complementary explanation of the recent developments in the U.S. and global economic activities. This sentiment channel also implies that subsiding trade policy uncertainty does not necessarily result in a recovery ...
Large Capital Inflows, Sectoral Allocation, and Economic Performance
This paper describes the stylized facts characterizing periods of exceptionally large capital inflows in a sample of 70 middle- and high-income countries over the last 35 years. We identify 155 episodes of large capital inflows and find that these events are typically accompanied by an economic boom and followed by a slump. Moreover, during episodes of large capital inflows capital and labor shift out of the manufacturing sector, especially if the inflows begin during a period of low international interest rates. However, accumulating reserves during the period in which capital inflows are ...
The Financial (In)Stability Real Interest Rate, R**
We introduce the concept of financial stability real interest rate using a macroeconomic banking model with an occasionally binding financing constraint as in Gertler and Kiyotaki (2010). The financial stability interest rate, r**, is the threshold interest rate that triggers the constraint being binding. Increasing imbalances in the financial sector measured by an increase in leverage are accompanied by a lower threshold that could trigger financial instability events. We also construct a theoretical implied financial condition index and show how it is related to the gap between the natural ...
The International Experience of Central Bank Asset Purchases and Inflation
Recent inflationary pressures in the global economy have rekindled the debate on the link between money growth and price stability. Specifically, does rapid central bank money creation resulting from large-scale purchases of government securities fuel inflationary spending by households and firms? We argue that there are many valid reasons to be skeptical about this textbook narrative. In this post, we look at the international experience with regard to asset purchases, money growth, and inflation dynamics in the pre-COVID era in an attempt to draw lessons from the recent past. Most notably, ...
Interest, Reserves, and Prices
We would like to propose a new framework for monetary policy analysis that encompasses, as a special case, the Neo-Wicksellian paradigm. A general form of an aggregate-demand equation reveals a role for liquidity, as well as less effective movements in future real rates with respect to current ones, in stimulating aggregate demand. The quantity of reserves and their interest rate both matter for determining inflation and economic activity.
Sudden Stops and COVID-19: Lessons from Mexico’s History
The COVID-19 pandemic produced a sharp contraction in capital flows in emerging markets during the spring of 2020. Such contractions are known as “sudden stops” and historically have been associated with significant downturns in a country’s economic activity. Evidence from Mexico’s financial crisis history suggests that sudden stops tend to exhibit a common pattern: the crisis lasts one to two years before a rapid but partial recovery, followed by years of protracted stagnation.
Is There a Bitcoin–Macro Disconnect?
Cryptocurrencies’ market capitalization has grown rapidly in recent years. This blog post analyzes the role of macro factors as possible drivers of cryptocurrency prices. We take a high-frequency perspective, and we focus on Bitcoin since its market capitalization dwarfs that of all other cryptocurrencies combined. The key finding is that, unlike other asset classes, Bitcoin has not responded significantly to U.S. macro and monetary policy news. This disconnect is puzzling, as unexpected changes in discount rates should, in principle, affect the price of Bitcoin.
The Financial (In)Stability Real Interest Rate, R**
We build a macro-finance model with an occasionally binding financing constraint where real interest rates have opposite effects on current and future financial stability, with the contemporaneous impact driven by valuation effects (akin to those triggering the 2023 banking turmoil) and the future impact driven by reach-for-yield by intermediaries. We use this model to illustrate the concept of the financial stability interest rate, r**, which we propose as a quantitative summary statistic for financial vulnerabilities. We provide a measure of r** for the U.S. economy and discuss its ...