Quarterly Review 2541

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Money and Interest Rates

Cyril Monnet
Warren E. Weber - Retired Economist

Fall 2001

Abstract
This study describes and reconciles two common, seemingly contradictory views about a key monetary policy relationship: that between money and interest rates. Data since 1960 for about 40 countries support the Fisher equation view, that these variables are positively related. But studies taking expectations into account support the liquidity effect view, that they are negatively related. A simple model incorporates both views and demonstrates that which view applies at any time depends on when the change in money occurs and how long the public expects it to last. A surprise money change that is not expected to change future money growth moves interest rates in the opposite direction; one that is expected to change future money growth moves interest rates in the same direction. The study also demonstrates that stating monetary policy as a rule for interest rates rather than money does not change the relationship between these variables.


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