This book integrates new political and ecomic elements into the analysis of monetary policy credibility and central bank independence. The author considers imperfect monetary control, rational voters, distributional issues and uncertainty about future policy objectives in his welfare analysis of central banking. The role played by the different institutional elements that contribute to the making of an independent central bank is also assessed. A distinction is made between central bank independence and targets offering new insights into how a more inflation averse monetary policy may actually be achieved. Finally, explanations for the variation of central bank independence and conservatism across different countries are provided. This book will appeal to researchers, academics and policymakers in the fields of monetary policy, financial ecomics, money and banking and political ecomy.
Francesco Lippi, Economist, Research Department, Bank of Italy With W. Letterie and O.H. Swank