nep-cba New Economics Papers
on Central Banking
Issue of 2020‒06‒29
25 papers chosen by
Sergey E. Pekarski
Higher School of Economics

  1. The credibility of the ECB's inflation target in times of Corona: New evidence from an online survey By Coleman, Winnie; Nautz, Dieter
  2. Monetary Policy with Opinionated Markets By Ricardo J. Caballero; Alp Simsek
  3. Systemic Banking Crises Database: A Timely Update in COVID-19 Times By Laeven, Luc; Valencia, Fabian
  4. The Open-Economy ELB: Contractionary Monetary Easing and the Trilemma By Cavallino, Paolo; Sandri, Damiano
  5. Central bank independence and systemic risk By Andrieș, Alin Marius; Podpiera, Anca Maria; Sprincean, Nicu
  6. The Macroeconomic Stabilization Of Tariff Shocks: What Is The Optimal Monetary Response? By Bergin, P. R.; Corsetti, G.
  7. The costs of macroprudential deleveraging in a liquidity trap By Chen, Jiaqian; Finocchiaro, Daria; Lindé, Jesper; Walentin, Karl
  8. Why Fiscal Regimes Matter for Fiscal Sustainability By Pierre Aldama; Jérôme Creel
  9. Macroprudential Policy and Household Debt: What is Wrong with Swedish Macroprudential Policy? By Svensson, Lars E.O.
  10. The Economics of the Fed Put By Cieslak, Anna; Vissing-Jørgensen, Annette
  11. Macro-Financial Linkages in a Structural Model of the Irish Economy By McInerney, Niall
  12. Inflation Expectations in Times of COVID-19 By Olivier Armantier; Gizem Koşar; Rachel Pomerantz; Daphne Skandalis; Kyle Smith; Giorgio Topa; Wilbert Van der Klaauw
  13. A structural investigation of quantitative easing By Böhl, Gregor; Goy, Gavin; Strobel, Felix
  14. Coronavirus: Case for Digital Money? By Zura Kakushadze; Jim Kyung-Soo Liew
  15. Modeling the Global Effects of the COVID-19 Sudden Stop in Capital Flows By Ozge Akinci; Gianluca Benigno; Albert Queraltó
  16. Monetary Policy and Asset Price Bubbles: A Laboratory Experiment By Jordi Galí; Giovanni Giusti
  17. Reserve Requirements and Bubbles By ASAOKA Shintaro
  18. An Event Study of COVID-19 Central Bank Quantitative Easing in Advanced and Emerging Economies By Jonathan S. Hartley; Alessandro Rebucci
  19. Inflation Dynamics of Financial Shocks By Olli Palm\'en
  20. The Anatomy of the Transmission of Macroprudential Policies By Viral V. Acharya; Katharina Bergant; Matteo Crosignani; Tim Eisert; Fergal J. McCann
  21. Digital Currency and the Economic Crisis: Helping States Respond By Geoffrey Goodell; Hazem Danny Al-Nakib; Paolo Tasca
  22. Monetary Policy and Income Inequality in the United States: The Role of Labor Unions By Kilman, Josefin
  23. The Fiscal Theory of the Price Level with a Bubble By Brunnermeier, Markus K; Merkel, Sebastian; Sannikov, Yuliy
  24. The Impact of Inflation Targeting on Inflation and Growth: How Robust Is the Evidence? By Junankar, Pramod N. (Raja); Wong, Chun Yee
  25. Blowing against the Wind? A Narrative Approach to Central Bank Foreign Exchange Intervention By Alain Naef

  1. By: Coleman, Winnie; Nautz, Dieter
    Abstract: Evidence on the credibility of a central bank's inflation target typically refers to the anchoring of survey-based measures of inflation expectations. However, both the survey question and the anchoring criteria are only loosely connected to the actual inflation target used in monetary policy practice. By using the exact wording of the ECB's definition of price-stability, we started a representative online survey of German citizens in January 2019 that is designed to measure the time-varying credibility of the inflation target. Our results indicate that credibility has significantly decreased in our sample period, particularly in the course of the coronavirus pandemic. Interestingly, even though inflation rates in Germany have been clearly below 2% for several years, credibility has declined mainly because Germans increasingly expect that inflation will be much higher than 2% over the medium term.
    Keywords: Credibility of Inflation Targets,Household Inflation Expectations,Online Surveys,Coronavirus pandemic
    JEL: E31 E52 E58
    Date: 2020
  2. By: Ricardo J. Caballero; Alp Simsek
    Abstract: Central banks (the Fed) and markets (the market) often disagree about the path of interest rates. We develop a model that explains this disagreement and study its implications for monetary policy and asset prices. We assume that the Fed and the market disagree about expected aggregate demand. Moreover, agents learn from data but not from each other---they are opinionated and information is fully symmetric. We then show that disagreements about future demand, together with learning, translate into disagreements about future interest rates. Moreover, these disagreements shape optimal monetary policy, especially when they are entrenched. The market perceives monetary policy "mistakes" and the Fed partially accommodates the market's view to mitigate the financial market fallout from perceived "mistakes." We also show that differences in the speed at which the Fed and the market react to the data---heterogeneous data sensitivity---matters for asset prices and interest rates. With heterogeneous data sensitivity, every macroeconomic shock has an embedded monetary policy "mistake" shock. When the Fed is more (less) data sensitive, the anticipation of these mistakes dampen (amplify) the impact of macroeconomic shocks on asset prices.
    JEL: E00 E12 E21 E32 E43 E44 G11 G12
    Date: 2020–06
  3. By: Laeven, Luc; Valencia, Fabian
    Abstract: This paper updates the database on systemic banking crises presented in Laeven and Valencia (2013a). Drawing on 151 systemic banking crises episodes around the globe during 1970-2017, the database includes information on crisis dates, policy responses to resolve banking crises, and the fiscal and output costs of crises. We provide new evidence that crises in high-income countries tend to last longer and be associated with higher output losses, lower fiscal costs, and more extensive use of bank guarantees and expansionary macro policies than crises in low- and middle-income countries. We complement the banking crises dates with sovereign debt and currency crises dates to find that sovereign debt and currency crises tend to coincide with or follow banking crises.
    Keywords: Bank Restructuring; Banking Crisis; Crisis Resolution; financial crisis
    JEL: E50 E60 G20
    Date: 2020–04
  4. By: Cavallino, Paolo; Sandri, Damiano
    Abstract: Contrary to the trilemma, we show that international financial integration can undermine the transmission of monetary policy even in countries with flexible exchange rates due to an open-economy Effective Lower Bound. The ELB is an interest rate threshold below which monetary easing becomes contractionary due to the interaction between capital flows and collateral constraints. A tightening in global monetary and financial conditions increases the ELB and may prompt central banks to hike rates despite output contracting. We also show that the ELB gives rise to a novel inter-temporal trade-off for monetary policy and calls for supporting monetary policy with additional policy tools.
    Keywords: carry trade; Collateral constraints; Currency mismatches; monetary policy; Spillovers
    JEL: E5 F3 F42
    Date: 2020–04
  5. By: Andrieș, Alin Marius; Podpiera, Anca Maria; Sprincean, Nicu
    Abstract: We investigate the relationship of central bank independence and banks’ systemic risk measures. Our results support the case for central bank independence, revealing that central bank independence has a robust, negative, and significant impact on the contribution and exposure of a bank to systemic risk. Moreover, the impact of central bank independence is similar for the stand-alone risk of individual banks. Secondarily, we study how the central bank independence affects the impact of selected country and banking system indicators on these systemic measures. The results show that central bank independence may exacerbate the effect of a crisis on the contribution of banks to systemic risk. However, central bank independence seems to mitigate the harmful effect of a bank’s high market power on its systemic risk contribution.
    JEL: G21 E58 G28
    Date: 2020–06–16
  6. By: Bergin, P. R.; Corsetti, G.
    Abstract: In the wake of Brexit and the Trump tariff war, central banks have had to reconsider the role of monetary policy in managing the economic effects of tariff shocks, which may induce a slowdown while raising inflation. This paper studies the optimal monetary policy responses using a New Keynesian model that includes elements from the trade literature, including global value chains in production, firm dynamics, and comparative advantage between two traded sectors. We find that, in response to a symmetric tariff war, the optimal policy response is generally expansionary: central banks stabilize the output gap at the expense of further aggravating short-run inflation---contrary to the prescription of the standard Taylor rule. In response to a tariff imposed unilaterally by a trading partner, it is optimal to engineer currency depreciation up to offsetting the effects of tariffs on relative prices, without completely redressing the effects of the tariff on the broader set of macroeconomic aggregates.
    Keywords: tariff shock, tariff war, optimal monetary policy, comparative advantage, production chains
    JEL: F40
    Date: 2020–04–06
  7. By: Chen, Jiaqian; Finocchiaro, Daria; Lindé, Jesper; Walentin, Karl
    Abstract: We examine the effects of various borrower-based macroprudential tools in a New Keynesian environment where both real and nominal interest rates are low. Our model features long-term debt, housing transaction costs and a zero lower bound constraint on policy rates. We find that the long-term costs, in terms of forgone consumption, of all the macroprudential tools we consider are moderate. Even so, the short-term costs differ dramatically between alternative tools. Specifically, a loan-to-value tightening is more than twice as contractionary compared to a loan-to-income tightening when debt is high and monetary policy cannot accommodate.
    Keywords: Collateral and borrowing constraints; Household Debt; housing prices; Mortgage interest deductibility; New Keynesian Model; zero lower bound
    JEL: E52 E58
    Date: 2020–04
  8. By: Pierre Aldama; Jérôme Creel
    Abstract: This paper introduces a Regime-Switching Model-Based Sustainability test allowing for periodic (or local) violations of Bohn (1998, QJE)’s sustainability condition. We assume a Markov-switching fiscal policy rule whose parameters stochastically switch between sustainable and unsustainable regimes. We demonstrate that long-run (or global) fiscal sustainability not only depends on regime-specific feedback coefficients of the fiscal policy rule but also on the average durations of fiscal regimes. Evidence on French data suggests that both the No-Ponzi Game condition and the Debt-stabilizing condition hold in the long run, when accounting for fiscal regimes, contrary to standard MBS tests. Drawing on former evidence about the characteristics of monetary policy in France, we discuss about the proper specification of the monetary-fiscal policy mix since 1965.
    Keywords: Fiscal Rules, Fiscal Regimes, Public Debt Sustainability, Time-Varying Parameters, Markov-Switching Models .
    JEL: E6 H6
    Date: 2020
  9. By: Svensson, Lars E.O.
    Abstract: Much is right with Swedish macroprudential policy. But regarding risks associated with household debt, the policy does not pass a cost-benefit test. The substantial credit tightening that Finansinspektionen (the FI, the Swedish Financial Supervisory Authority) has achieved â?? through amortization requirements and more indirect ways â?? has no demonstrable benefits but substantial costs. The FI - and the international organizations that have commented on risks associated with Swedish household debt - use a flawed theoretical framework for assessing macroeconomic risks from household debt. The tightening was undertaken for mistaken reasons. Several reforms are required for a better-functioning mortgage market. A reform of the governance of macroprudential policy â?? including a decision-making committee and improved accountability â?? may reduce risks of policy mistakes.
    Keywords: Household Debt; Housing; Macroeconomic Risk; macroprudential policy; Mortgages
    JEL: E21 G1 G21 G23 G28 R21
    Date: 2020–04
  10. By: Cieslak, Anna; Vissing-Jørgensen, Annette
    Abstract: Since the mid-1990s, low stock returns predict accommodating policy by the Federal Reserve. This fact emerges because, over this period, negative stock returns comove with downgrades to the Fed's growth expectations. Textual analysis of the FOMC documents reveals that policymakers pay attention to the stock market, and their negative stock-market mentions predict federal funds rate cuts. The primary mechanism why policymakers find the stock market informative is via its effect on consumption, with a smaller role for the market viewed as predicting the economy.
    Keywords: Fed put; monetary policy; Stock market; Taylor rules; textual analysis
    JEL: E44 E52 E58
    Date: 2020–04
  11. By: McInerney, Niall (Central Bank of Ireland)
    Abstract: We specify and estimate a system of macro-financial linkages that incorporate transmission channels for both borrower- and lender-based macroprudential instruments. We then embed these linkages in a structural macro model of the Irish economy. To illustrate the usefulness of the model for policy analysis, we simulate several scenarios. We first show that regulatory changes to LTI and LTV ratios have a relatively large impact on the real economy, primarily through consumption. We next examine the stabilising properties of the countercyclical capital buffer. We find that releasing this buffer in response to an adverse real and financial shock can partially attenuate of the ensuing contraction in credit and output. Finally, we consider the impact of an exogenous fall in commercial real estate prices and demonstrate that this sector can generate significant macro-financial volatility.
    Keywords: Banking, macroprudential, house prices, structural modelling
    JEL: E5 E53 E52 G21
    Date: 2020–05
  12. By: Olivier Armantier; Gizem Koşar; Rachel Pomerantz; Daphne Skandalis; Kyle Smith; Giorgio Topa; Wilbert Van der Klaauw
    Abstract: As an important driver of the inflation process, inflation expectations must be monitored closely by policymakers to ensure they remain consistent with long-term monetary policy objectives. In particular, if inflation expectations start drifting away from the central bank’s objective, they could become permanently “un-anchored” in the long run. Because the COVID-19 pandemic is a crisis unlike any other, its impact on short- and medium-term inflation has been challenging to predict. In this post, we summarize the results of our forthcoming paper that makes use of the Survey of Consumer Expectations (SCE) to study how the COVID-19 outbreak has affected the public’s inflation expectations. We find that, so far, households’ inflation expectations have not exhibited a consistent upward or downward trend since the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the data reveal unprecedented increases in individual uncertainty—and disagreement across respondents—about future inflation outcomes. Close monitoring of these measures is warranted because elevated levels may signal a risk of inflation expectations becoming unanchored.
    Keywords: inflation expectations; COVID-19
    JEL: E52 E31
    Date: 2020–05–13
  13. By: Böhl, Gregor; Goy, Gavin; Strobel, Felix
    Abstract: Did the Federal Reserves' Quantitative Easing (QE) in the aftermath of the financial crisis have macroeconomic effects? To answer this question, the authors estimate a large-scale DSGE model over the sample from 1998 to 2020, including data of the Fed's balance sheet. The authors allow for QE to affect the economy via multiple channels that arise from several financial frictions. Their nonlinear Bayesian likelihood approach fully accounts for the zero lower bound on nominal interest rates. They find that between 2009 to 2015, QE increased output by about 1.2 percent. This reflects a net increase in investment of nearly 9 percent, that was accompanied by a 0.7 percent drop in aggregate consumption. Both, government bond and capital asset purchases were effective in improving financing conditions. Especially capital asset purchases significantly facilitated new investment and increased the production capacity. Against the backdrop of a fall in consumption, supply side effects dominated which led to a mild disinflationary effect of about 0.25 percent annually.
    Keywords: Quantitative Easing,Liquidity Facilities,Zero Lower Bound,Nonlinear Bayesian Estimation
    JEL: E63 C63 E58 E32 C62
    Date: 2020
  14. By: Zura Kakushadze; Jim Kyung-Soo Liew
    Abstract: We discuss the pros of adopting government-issued digital currencies as well as a supranational digital iCurrency. One such pro is to get rid of paper money (and coinage), a ubiquitous medium for spreading germs, as highlighted by the recent coronavirus outbreak. We set forth three policy recommendations for adapting mobile devices as new digital wallets, regulatory oversight of sovereign digital currencies and user data protection, and a supranational digital iCurrency for facilitating international digital monetary linkages.
    Date: 2020–05
  15. By: Ozge Akinci; Gianluca Benigno; Albert Queraltó
    Abstract: The COVID-19 outbreak has triggered unusually fast outflows of dollar funding from emerging market economies (EMEs). These outflows are known as “sudden stop” episodes, and they are typically followed by economic contractions. In this post, we assess the macroeconomic effects of the COVID-induced sudden stop of capital flows to EMEs, using our open-economy DSGE model. Unlike existing frameworks, such as the Federal Reserve Board’s SIGMA model, our model features both domestic and international financial constraints, making it well-suited to capture the effects of an outflow of dollar funding. The model predicts output losses in EMEs due in part to the adverse effect of local currency depreciation on private-sector balance sheets with dollar debts. The financial stresses in EMEs, in turn, spill back to the U.S. economy, through both trade and financial channels. The model-predicted output losses are persistent (consistent with previous sudden stop episodes), with financial effects being a significant drag on the recovery. We stress that we are only tracing out the effects of one particular channel (the stop of capital flows and its associated effect on funding costs) and not the totality of COVID-related effects.
    Keywords: sudden stops; COVID-19; spillovers and spillbacks
    JEL: E2 F1
    Date: 2020–05–18
  16. By: Jordi Galí; Giovanni Giusti
    Abstract: Advocates of a Leaning-Against-the-Wind monetary policy have claimed that such a policy can moderate asset price bubbles. On the other hand, there are compelling theoretical arguments that the policy would have the opposite effect. We study the effect of monetary policy on asset prices in a laboratory experiment with an overlapping generations structure. Participants in the role of the young generation allocate their endowment between two investments: a risky asset and a one-period riskless bond. The risky asset pays no dividend and thus capital gains are its only source of value. Consequently, its price is a pure bubble. We study how variations in the interest rate affect the evolution of the bubble in an experiment with three treatments. One treatment has a fixed low interest rate, another a fixed high interest rate, and the third has a Leaning-Againstthe-Wind interest rate policy in effect. We observe that the bubble increases (decreases) when interest rates are lower (higher) in the period of a policy change. However, the opposite effect is observed in the following period, when higher (lower) interest rates are associated with greater (smaller) bubble growth. Direct measurement of expectations reveals a Trend-Following component.
    Date: 2020–05
  17. By: ASAOKA Shintaro
    Abstract: This study investigates the effectiveness of the reserve requirement policy as a preventive measure against economic bubbles. In the existing literature, it has been pointed out that the expansion of bubbles can be prevented by raising the required reserve ratio. The present study demonstrates this may not be the case. If the ratio is below a certain threshold, the conventional policy prediction fails or in other words, raising the required reserve ratio expands a bubble. If, in contrast, the ratio is above the threshold, it prevents the expansion of the bubble (or the conventional prediction holds). In either case, a policy of raising the reserve requirement is welfare reducing in our model. This implies that if the ratio is below the threshold, the optimal policy is to cut the required reserve ratio, which will increase welfare while at the same time that it will reduce the bubble.
    Date: 2020–05
  18. By: Jonathan S. Hartley; Alessandro Rebucci
    Abstract: Amid the COVID-19 outbreak and related expected economic downturn, many developed and emerging market central banks around the world engaged in new long-term asset purchase programs, or so-called quantitative easing (QE) interventions. This paper conducts an event-study analysis of 24 COVID-19 QE announcements made by 21 global central banks on their local 10-year government bond yields. We find that the average developed market QE announcement had a statistically significant -0.14% 1-day impact, which is slightly smaller than past interventions during the Great Recession era. In contrast, the average impact of emerging market QE announcements was significantly larger, averaging -0.28% and -0.43% over 1-day and 3-day windows, respectively. Across developed and emerging bond markets, we estimate an overall average 1-day impact of -0.23%. We also show that all 10-year government bond yields in our sample rose sharply in mid-March 2020, but fell substantially after the period of QE announcements that we study in the paper.
    JEL: E52 E58 F42 G14 I28
    Date: 2020–06
  19. By: Olli Palm\'en
    Abstract: We study the effects of financial shocks on the United States economy by using a Bayesian structural vector autoregressive (SVAR) model that exploits the non-normalities in the data. We use this method to uniquely identify the model and employ inequality constraints to single out financial shocks. The results point to the existence of two distinct financial shocks that have opposing effects on inflation, which supports the idea that financial shocks are transmitted to the real economy through both demand and supply side channels.
    Date: 2020–06
  20. By: Viral V. Acharya; Katharina Bergant; Matteo Crosignani; Tim Eisert; Fergal J. McCann
    Abstract: We analyze how regulatory constraints on household leverage—in the form of loan-to-income and loan-to-value limits—affect residential mortgage credit and house prices as well as other asset classes not directly targeted by the limits. Supervisory loan level data suggest that mortgage credit is reallocated from low-to high-income borrowers and from urban to rural counties. This reallocation weakens the feedback loop between credit and house prices and slows down house price growth in “hot” housing markets. Consistent with constrained lenders adjusting their portfolio choice, more-affected banks drive this reallocation and substitute their risk-taking into holdings of securities and corporate credit.
    JEL: E21 E44 E58 G21 R21
    Date: 2020–05
  21. By: Geoffrey Goodell; Hazem Danny Al-Nakib; Paolo Tasca
    Abstract: The current crisis, at the time of writing, has had a profound impact on the financial world, introducing the need for creative approaches to revitalising the economy at the micro level as well as the macro level. In this informal analysis and design proposal, we describe how infrastructure for digital assets can serve as a useful monetary and fiscal policy tool and an enabler of existing tools in the future, particularly during crises, while aligning the trajectory of financial technology innovation toward a brighter future. We propose an approach to digital currency that would allow people without banking relationships to transact electronically and privately, including both internet purchases and point-of-sale purchases that are required to be cashless. We also propose an approach to digital currency that would allow for more efficient and transparent clearing and settlement, implementation of monetary and fiscal policy, and management of systemic risk. The digital currency could be implemented as central bank digital currency (CBDC), or it could be issued by the government and collateralised by public funds or Treasury assets. Our proposed architecture allows both manifestations and would be operated by banks and other money services businesses, operating within a framework overseen by government regulators. We argue that now is the time for action to undertake development of such a system, not only because of the current crisis but also in anticipation of future crises resulting from geopolitical risks, the continued globalisation of the digital economy, and the changing value and risks that technology brings.
    Date: 2020–06
  22. By: Kilman, Josefin (Department of Economics, Lund University)
    Abstract: There is a growing literature investigating if and how monetary policy impacts income inequality. Labor unions are generally found to mitigate income inequality and a recent literature highlight that changing labor market structures, such as deunionization, may be important for monetary policy. This paper tests whether labor unions influence the impact of monetary shocks on income inequality in the United States over the period 1970-2008, and the channels this effect runs through. It is the first paper to identify variation in unionization rates as a moderator to the impact of monetary policy on income inequality. I measure income inequality and unionization on the state level and can therefore exploit that unionization rates vary both within and across states while monetary shocks are common to all states. The main finding is that contractionary monetary shocks increase income inequality, but the impact is weaker with a higher union density. A one percentage point monetary shock increases the Gini coefficient with 5.4 % when union density is 5 %, while it increases Gini with 1.7 % when union density is 15 %. I find evidence that both wages and employment are two channels explaining how unions mitigate the monetary policy - income inequality relationship. The findings of the channels suggest that unions make the adjustment to monetary shocks more even across workers, rather than mitigating the aggregate effect of the shocks. This suggests that the structure of the labor market impacts the relationship between monetary policy and income inequality.
    Keywords: Monetary policy; income inequality; labor unions
    JEL: D31 E24 E52 J51
    Date: 2020–06–06
  23. By: Brunnermeier, Markus K; Merkel, Sebastian; Sannikov, Yuliy
    Abstract: This paper incorporates a bubble term in the standard FTPL equation to explain why countries with persistently negative primary surpluses can have a positively valued currency and low inflation. It also provides an example with closed-form solutions in which idiosyncratic risk on capital returns depresses the interest rate on government bonds below the economy's growth rate.
    Keywords: Fiscal policy; Monetary Economics
    JEL: E44 E52 E63
    Date: 2020–04
  24. By: Junankar, Pramod N. (Raja) (University of New South Wales); Wong, Chun Yee (International University of Japan)
    Abstract: This paper evaluates the success of Inflation Targeting on inflation and growth on a large panel data set of both developing and developed countries. Earlier studies have found contradictory results depending on the methodology used, different authors have used different estimation methods on different samples of data. Some of the differences in results may also be due to the different time periods (or different frequencies of data) used in the estimation. In this paper, we provide evidence to show that the support for a successful Inflation Targeting policy is very weak or non-existent. We use various estimation methods on panel data on a large sample of countries. We note that the results depend critically on the sample selected, the method of estimation employed, and the procedure used to control for outliers. Section 2 of the paper outlines the process by which inflation targeting is hypothesised to influence inflation and growth, Section 3 surveys this literature, and Section 4 describes the data and provides descriptive statistics comparing the performance of Inflation Targeting countries and non-Inflation Targeting countries, Section 5 uses panel estimation methods including GMM techniques on different samples of data and demonstrates the fragile nature of the results. Section 6 provides the conclusions that suggest that IT policy does not necessarily help to reduce inflation and certainly does not stimulate economic growth.
    Keywords: Inflation Targeting, inflation, growth
    JEL: E31 J68 J08
    Date: 2020–05
  25. By: Alain Naef (University of California, Berkeley)
    Abstract: Few studies on foreign exchange intervention convincingly address the causal effect of intervention on exchange rates. By using a narrative approach, I address a major issue in the literature: the endogeneity of intraday news which influence the exchange rate alongside central bank operations. Some studies find that interventions work in up to 80% of cases. Yet, by accounting for intraday market moving news, I find that in adverse conditions, the Bank of England managed to influence the exchange rate only in 8% of cases. I use both machine learning and human assessment to confirm the validity of the narrative approach.
    Keywords: intervention, foreign exchange, natural language processing, central bank, Bank of England.
    JEL: F31 E5 N14 N24
    Date: 2020–06

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