Norges Bank

Working Paper

Communicating monetary policy intentions: The case of Norges Bank

Author:
by Amund Holmsen, Jan F. Qvigstad, Øistein Røisland and Kristin Solberg-Johansen
Series:
Working Paper
Number:
20/2008

Abstract
Monetary policy works mainly through private agents’ expectations. How precisely future policy intentions are communicated has, according to theory, implications for the outcome of monetary policy. Norges Bank has gone further than most other central banks in communicating its policy intentions. The Bank publishes its own interest rate forecast, along with forecasts of inflation, the output gap, and other key variables. Moreover, Norges Bank aims to be precise about how the policy intentions are formed. The Bank currently uses optimal policy in a timeless perspective as the normative benchmark when assessing the policy intentions. Given the reaction pattern based on the timeless perspective, the Bank identifies and explains the factors that bring about a change in the interest rate forecast from one Monetary Policy Report to the next. The main arguments for publishing the interest rate forecast are discussed and validated against three years of experience with such forecasts. In this paper, we find evidence of reduced volatility in market interest rates on the days with interest rate decisions, which suggests that communicating policy intentions more precisely improves the market participants’ understanding of the central bank’s reaction pattern.

 

Norges Bank’s working papers present research projects and reports that are generally not in their final form. Other analyses by Norges Bank’s economists are also included in the series. The views and conclusions in these documents are those of the authors.

Norges Bank’s Working Papers are also distributed by RepEcSSRN and BIS Central Bank Research Hub.

ISSN 1502-8190 (online)

Published 12 December 2008 14:28
Published 12 December 2008 14:28