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Losing traction? The real effects of monetary policy when interest rates are low

Summary:
by Rashad Ahmed, Claudio Borio, Piti Disyatat and Boris HofmannAre there limits to how far reductions in interest rates can boost aggregate demand? In particular, as interest rates fall to very low levels, does the effectiveness of monetary policy in boosting the economy wane? We provide evidence consistent with this hypothesis. Based on a panel ...

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by Rashad Ahmed, Claudio Borio, Piti Disyatat and Boris Hofmann
Are there limits to how far reductions in interest rates can boost aggregate demand? In particular, as interest rates fall to very low levels, does the effectiveness of monetary policy in boosting the economy wane? We provide evidence consistent with this hypothesis. Based on a panel of 18 advanced countries starting in 1985, we find that monetary transmission to economic activity is substantially weaker when interest rates are low.
International Settlement
The Bank for International Settlements (BIS) is an international company limited by shares owned by central banks which "fosters international monetary and financial cooperation and serves as a bank for central banks". The BIS carries out its work through subcommittees, the secretariats it hosts and through an annual general meeting of all member banks. It also provides banking services, but only to central banks and other international organizations. It is based in Basel, Switzerland, with representative offices in Hong Kong and Mexico City.

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