NIESR Discussion Paper

The UK Economy in the Long Expansion and its Aftermath

In the aftermath of the inflation and recessions of the 1970s and early 1980s, from the early 1990s onwards there was a major upswing in most advanced countries. In the UK it was the longest period of economic expansion on record. But it came to an abrupt end in 2007, with the freezing of the interbank markets and the collapse of Northern Rock, followed in 2008 by Bear Stearns and Lehman Brothers. 

The New Art of Central Banking

This article outlines some of the intellectual lessons learnt by central bankers during the financial crisis. The key question is whether a broader range of policy options than simple inflation targeting has to be considered in order to limit instability. Interactions with overseas pools of savings, government debt markets and financial risk have all conspired to complicate significantly the task of monetary policymaking.

Finance and Credit in a Model of Monetary Policy

Economies is the extent to which a workhorse advanced economy model can yield important insights for monetary policy-making. We note that the standard sticky-price, monopolistically competitive model does not allow analysis of money and credit dynamics and led to a concentration of research on simple interest rate reaction functions. Time-varying financial frictions tend to act as a tax on intermediation activities and so can vary output in a significant manner.

Macroprudential tools, transmission and modelling

The purpose of this paper is twofold. First, we review the theoretical and empirical literature on macroprudential policies and tools. Second, we test empirically the effectiveness of several macroprudential policies and tools using three datasets from the IMF and BIS that cover up to 19 OECD countries during 2000-2014, thus giving wide coverage of instruments. In addition, our focus on OECD countries gives us access to a wider range of control variables whose omission may lead to excessively favourable results on the impact of macroprudential policies.

Quantifying Fiscal Multipliers

This paper uses the National Institute Global Econometric Model (NiGEM) to quantify the magnitude of fiscal multipliers in each Euro Area country when fiscal policies are enacted in each country in isolation and when there is international coordination of fiscal policies. We find that fiscal multipliers are usually below 1 when countries implement fiscal policies in isolation. By contrast, multipliers increase significantly, on average by 50 to a 100 per cent depending on the fiscal instrument, when there is international coordination of fiscal policies.

Fiscal Policy Spillovers

This paper uses the National Institute Global Econometric Model (NiGEM) to quantify the magnitude of fiscal spillover multipliers in each Euro Area country following a fiscal shock to one particular Euro Area country. Spillover multipliers lie between 0.01 and 0.3 per cent when the fiscal shock takes place in Germany. These estimates correlate with the degree of trade linkages between Euro Area countries and on the elasticity of imports to total final expenditure of each country.

The monetary and fiscal framework of the EMU in times of high debt and constrained interest rates

This paper looks at the monetary and fiscal interaction in the European Monetary Union and how the two arms of macrostabilisation policy are affected by high levels of sovereign debt and short-term interest rates at, or around, their lower bound. Using the National Institute’s Global Econometric Model it shows that when one arm of policy is constrained then the other must do more work to act as a partial, yet imperfect substitute.

The fiscal and monetary determinants of sovereign bond yields in the Euro Area

This paper investigates the determinants of sovereign bond yields in the Euro Area through the lens of the expectations hypothesis adjusting for measures of risk. This allows us to see the extent to which monetary policy, which controls the path of short-term nominal interest rates, is a driver of longer-term sovereign yields. To do this we include a forward-looking measure of expectations of overnight interest rates alongside debt-GDP in an error-correcting panel framework.

Linking Retirement Age to Life Expectancy in a Bismarckian System - The Case of Germany

In times of decreasing mortality, one way to stabilise a PAYG pension system is to interrelate the retirement age to the anticipated average lifespan. This paper investigates two approaches for Germany: one is to keep the average retirement duration constant, the other to define a constant share of the total lifespan for the retirement period. Our simulation model uses a Leslie matrix population projection, a Solow-Swan growth model and a detailed calculation of the German pension insurance budget.