Monetary aggregates

  • August 14, 1999

    Passive Money, Active Money, and Monetary Policy

    This article by the Bank's visiting economist examines the role of money in the transmission of monetary policy. Professor Laidler argues against the view of money as a passive variable that reacts to changes in prices, output, and interest rates but has no direct causative effect on them. He maintains that the empirical evidence supports the view of money playing an active role in the transmission mechanism. While he agrees that individual monetary aggregates can be difficult to read because of instabilities in the demand-for-money function, he argues that monetary aggregates, particularly those relating to transactions money, should have a more significant place in the hierarchy of policy variables that the Bank considers when formulating monetary policy.
  • May 15, 1999

    Recent developments in the monetary aggregates and their implications

    In its conduct of monetary policy, the Bank of Canada carefully monitors the pace of monetary expansion for indications about the outlook for inflation and economic activity. In recent years, a number of factors have distorted the growth of the traditional broad and narrow aggregates. In this article, the authors discuss the uncertainty surrounding the classification of deposit instruments that has resulted from the elimination of reserve requirements and from other financial innovations. They introduce two new measures of transactions balances, M1+ and M1++ (described more fully in a technical note in this issue of the Review), that internalize some of the substitutions that have occurred. They attribute the deceleration in M1 growth in 1998 partly to the declining influence of special factors, partly to a lagged response to interest rate increases in 1997 and early 1998, and partly to some temporary tightening in credit conditions in the autumn of 1998. The broad monetary aggregate M2++, which includes all personal savings deposits, life insurance annuities, and mutual funds, grew at a steady pace in 1998, presaging growth of about 4 to 5 per cent in total dollar spending and inflation inside the target range.
  • The Quantity of Money and Monetary Policy

    Staff Working Paper 1999-5 David Laidler
    The relationships among the quantity theory of money, monetarism and policy regimes based on money-growth and inflation targeting are briefly discussed as a prelude to an exposition of alternative views of money's role in the transmission mechanism of monetary policy. The passive-money view treats the money supply as an endogenous variable that plays no role […]

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