The Political Economy of Monetary Policy Conduct and Central Bank Design

  • Manfred Gärtner

There are few areas in which public choice has had as much success in making inroads into mainstream economics and, in particular, in influencing real-life developments as in the design of monetary institutions and the day-to-day conduct of monetary policy. This survey tracks these developments, from the humble beginnings in the 1970s related to Nordhaus’ (1975) account of the opportunistic political business cycle to the widespread academic and political discussion on monetary policy rules and targets of today.2 The next section contains a compact review of the two classical ideas in political macroeconomics, the political business cycle and the inflation bias. We then move on to more modern stochastic models, in which the desire for undistorted stabilization of supply shocks calls for refined remedies to the time-inconsistency problem, such as performance contracts and inflation targets for central banks. The following section moves on to a discussion of current developments that focus on instrument and targeting rules for monetary policy. Finally, we briefly assess these developments.


Utility Function Monetary Policy Public Choice Phillips Curve Performance Contract 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Springer Science + Business Media, LLC 2008

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  • Manfred Gärtner

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