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Commitment or discretion? An empirical investigation of monetary policy preferences in China

Ding Liu (), Yue Zhang and Weihong Sun

Economic Modelling, 2020, vol. 85, issue C, 409-419

Abstract: This paper offers a first attempt to estimate the policy preferences of China’s central bank by confronting a small-scale microfounded New Keynesian model in which monetary policy is described by commitment or discretion with the Chinese macroeconomic data over the period from 1992Q2 to 2017Q4. Bayesian model comparison reveals that the data favor discretionary monetary policy. Estimates of the loss function weights under both cases show that the leading policy goal is price stability, followed by output stability and then interest rate smoothing. Finally, through counterfactual analyses we assess how macroeconomic outcomes might improve, had the Chinese central bank been able to commit. These findings shed new light on the opaque Chinese monetary policy, and are robust to subsample analysis.

Keywords: Commitment; Discretion; New keynesian model; Optimal monetary policy; China (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: E52 E58 E61 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
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DOI: 10.1016/j.econmod.2019.11.022

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