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Opportunistic Political Central Bank Coverage: Does media coverage of ECB's Monetary Policy Impacts German Political Parties' Popularity?

Hugo Oriola and Matthieu Picault

No 2023-30, EconomiX Working Papers from University of Paris Nanterre, EconomiX

Abstract: We define the concept of Opportunistic Political Central Bank Coverage (OPCBC) which corresponds to an opportunistic modification of parties’ popularity induced by media coverage of monetary policy. More precisely, we suppose that the treatment of monetary policy in the press has a significant impact on the popularity of national political parties prior to an election. To investigate on the existence of this concept, we collect monthly popularity ratings for 6 German political forces on the period between January 2005 and December 2021. Then, we measure media coverage through a textual analysis on more than 26.000 press articles from 6 different German newspapers. Finally, we estimate popularity functions for these German political parties in which we introduce our textual measures interacted with a dummy taking the value 1 in the month prior to an election. Our analysis underlines the existence of OPCBCs in Germany in the month preceding federal elections and elections to the European Parliament. This result is robust to the use of a SUR model, alternative pre-electoral periods, the implementation of two different tone analysis, the use of Google Trends data and the interest of the public for members of the ECB. Finally, it seems that the existence of OPCBCs depend on the partisanship of the media studied.

Keywords: European Central Bank; Press; Textual Analysis; Tone Analysis; Elections; Political Cycles; Germany (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D72 E58 P35 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 63 pages
Date: 2023
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-ban, nep-big, nep-cba, nep-cdm, nep-eec, nep-mon and nep-pol
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