Central Banking and Crisis Management from the Perspective of Austrian Business Cycle Theory

Gunther Schnabl

März 2019

Abstract

This chapter analyzes the evolution and effects of central bank crisis management since the mid-1980s based on a Hayek-Mises-Wicksell overinvestment framework. It is shown that given that the traditional transmission mechanism between monetary policy and consumer price inflation has collapsed, asymmetric monetary policy crisis management implies a convergence of interest rates toward zero and a gradual expansion of central bank balance sheets. From a Wicksell-Hayek-Mises perspective, asymmetric central bank crisis management has contributed to financial market bubbles, decreasing marginal efficiency of investment, increasing income inequality, and declining growth dynamics. The economic policy implication is a slow but decisive exit from ultra-expansionary monetary policies.

Keywords: , , , , , , , , .

Erschienen in

The Oxford Handbook of the Economics of Central Banking.

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Monetary policy, inequality and political instability

Pablo Duarte; Gunther Schnabl

Februar 2019

Abstract

Voters in the industrialised countries are increasingly expressing dissatisfaction by dissenting from the established political parties and candidates. Based on the concepts of justice by Hayek, Rawls and Buchanan, we argue that the growing dissatisfaction is rooted in the asymmetric pattern of monetary policies since the mid‐1980s for two reasons. First, the structurally declining interest rates and the unconventional monetary policy measures have granted privileges to specific groups. Second, the increasingly expansionary monetary policies have negative growth effects, which have reduced the scope for compensation of the ones excluded from the privileges. As a result, the acceptance of the prevailing economic and political order is undermined and political instability increases.

JEL Codes: , , .

Erschienen in

The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 42(2), pages 614-634.

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Ultra-lockere Geldpolitiken, Finanzmarktblasen und marktwirtschaftliche Ordnung

Gunther Schnabl

Juni 2018

Abstract

Der Beitrag befasst sich mit der ultra-lockeren Geldpolitik als Ursache für Finanzmarktblasen, anhaltende Stagnation und wachsende Ungleichheit. Es wird argumentiert, dass es zu Überinvestition un Spekulation kommt, wenn die Zentralbanken den Zins zu niedrig setzen. Das Platzen der Spekulationsblasen führt in neue Krisen. Das Ergebnis sind wachsende strukturelle Verzerrungen, die negativ auf Produktivitätsgewinne und Wachstum wirken. Während reiche Bevölkerungsschichten vom graduellen Anstieg der Vermögenspreise profitieren, stagniert das durchschnittliche Lohnniveau. Da die Kosten dieser Krisentherapien überproportional auf die jungen und ärmeren Bevölkerungsschichten verschoben werden, wird zunehmend die politische Stabilität gefährdet.

Keywords: , , .

Erschienen in

Nadya Kosturkova and Rieger, Jörg (2018): Ordnungspolitisch stets uaf Kurs: Festschrift zum 65. Geburtstag von Prof. Dr. Norbert Berthold, Vahlen, München, 2018, pp 289-297.

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Austrian Economics, Money and Finance

Thomas Mayer

Juni 2018

Abstract

The financial crisis has exposed severe shortcomings in mainstream monetary economics and modern finance. It is surprising that these shortcomings have not led to a wider debate about the need to overhaul these theories. Instead, mainstream economists have closed ranks to defend existing theories and public authorities have expanded their interference in markets.

Erschienen in

Routledge 2017 .

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Europäische Geldpolitik und Zombiefizierung

David Herok; Gunther Schnabl

Juni 2018

Abstract

Während die Arbeitslosigkeit in Europa stetig sinkt und immer weniger Unternehmen Insolvenz anmelden, wächst im Schatten der anhaltenden Flut des billigen Geldes durch die EZB die Anzahl von sogenannten Zombie -Banken, Zombie-Unternehmen und Zombie Staaten. Diese Entwicklung erinnert an eine Rückkehr zu planwirtschaftlichen Strukturen und erschwert den Ausstieg aus der sehr lockeren Geldpolitik. Nur ein Ausstieg kann jedoch entscheidend der fortschreitenden Zombiefizierung Einhalt zu gebieten, die die marktwirt-schaftlichen Prinzipien unterhöhlt, das Wachstum lähmt und den sozialen Frieden stört.

While unemployment and bankruptcies in Europe are steadily on decline, the number of so-called zombie banks, zombie companies and zombie states is growing in the shadow of the ECB's persistent ultra-easy monetary policy. This development is reminiscent of a return to planned economic structures and makes it much more difficult to exit from the very loose monetary policy. However, an exit is crucial to halting the zombification process which un-dermines free-market principles and growth, and disrupts social peace.

Keywords: , , , , , , , , .

JEL Codes: , , .

Erschienen in

Austrian Institute Paper 21 (2018).

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Regional Heterogeneity, the Rise of Public Debt and Monetary Policy in Post-Bubble Japan: Lessons for the EMU

Raphael Fischer; Gunther Schnabl

April 2018

Abstract

Both Japan and parts of the European Monetary Union have experienced boom and bust in stock and real estate markets, which have been followed by a lasting crisis. The paper analyses the role of a high degree of regional heterogeneity for public debt and monetary policy in the context of crisis. It is shown for Japan that the attempts to maintain regional cohesion via a regional transfer mechanism has contributed to the unprecedented rise in public debt and persistent monetary expansion. Econometric estimations show that in Japan regional redistribution of funds has ensured homogeneous living conditions across Japanese regions pre- and post-crisis. The side condition is monetary expansion. A similar effect could emerge in Europe, if the crisis persists.

Keywords: , , , , .

JEL Codes: , , .

Erschienen in

International Economics and Economic Policy (April 2018), Volume 15, Issue 2, pp 405–428.

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Monetary policy and overinvestment in East Asia and Europe

Gunther Schnabl

Dezember 2017

Abstract

The paper analyzes the role of monetary policy for cyclical movements of investment and asset markets in East Asia and Europe based on a Mises-Hayek overinvestment framework. It is shown how the gradual global decline of interest rates has triggered wandering overinvestment cycles in Japan, Southeast Asia, and China. Similarly, it is shown how a one-size monetary policy within the European Monetary Union has not preserved the European Monetary Union from idiosyncratic economic development and crisis because of uncoordinated fiscal policies. With monetary policy crisis management being argued to impede financial and economic restructuring, a timely exit from ultra-expansionary monetary policies is recommended for both East Asia and Europe to reconstitute economic stability and growth.

JEL Codes: , , , .

Erschienen in

Asia Europe Journal (December 2017), Volume 15, Issue 4, pp 445–462.

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via SpringerLink

Net Foreign Asset Positions and Appreciation Expectations on the Swiss Franc and the Japanese Yen

Sophia Latsos; Gunther Schnabl

August 2015

Abstract

The paper shows that currencies of countries with persistent current account surpluses and high foreign-currency denominated assets, such as the Swiss franc and the Japanese yen, are under persistent appreciation pressure, particularly when the centres of the world monetary system follow expansionary monetary policies. This limits the choice of exchange rate regime. Given flexible exchange rates, a negative risk premium on the domestic interest rate can emerge. Empirical estimations provide mixed evidence for a negative impact of net foreign asset positions and exchange rate uncertainty on interest rates of international creditor countries at the periphery of the world monetary system.

Keywords: , , , , , .

JEL Codes: , , .

Erschienen in

CESifo Working Paper No. 5490 (August 2015).

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Macroeconomic Policy Making, Exchange Rate Adjustment and Current Account Imbalances in Emerging Markets

Pablo Duarte; Gunther Schnabl

Juli 2015

Abstract

Since a series of crisis events after 2007, the discussion about the adjustment channels of current account imbalances has been revived. We discuss the effectiveness of exchange rates versus macroeconomic policies to rebalance current accounts for a set of 86 mainly emerging market economies. We find that nominal exchange rates are not a sufficient adjustment channel for (unsustainable) current account positions. Instead, depending on the region, monetary and/or fiscal policies are the main determinants of current accounts. For East Asia and the oil exporting countries sterilization policies, i.e. relatively tight monetary policies, are the main determinants. In contrast the main driving forces for emerging and southern Europe are fiscal policy stances. Only for the Latin American countries the exchange rate seems to play a significant role.

Keywords: , , , , .

JEL Codes: , , .

Erschienen in

Review of Development Economics, Volume 19, Issue 3, pp 531-544.

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Policy Shifts and Financial Instability in Emerging Markets

Andreas Hoffmann; Björn Urbansky

Juli 2015

Abstract

We explain periods of financial instability following drastic policy shifts within a Hayekian framework. Hayek emphasized that prices, established via the market process, help market participants to form coherent expectations about the future and coordinate plans with one another. In this paper, we elaborate on how policy shifts may undermine planning based on price signals and exacerbate uncertainty about the future, which can contribute to financial instability. Based on our postulated framework, we clarify how financial liberalization in the 1980s/1990s and the recent discretionary monetary policies in the advanced economies may have contributed to recurring episodes of financial instability in emerging markets. In particular, this paper provides an explanation for (1) why we observe financial instability mainly shortly following financial liberalization, and (2) why financial developments in the emerging markets are sensitive to unexpected monetary policy changes in the advanced countries in the current zero-interest rate environment.

Erschienen in

Review of Development Economics, Volume 19, Issue 3, pp 455-469.

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