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40 Results

A Financial Conditions Index for the United States

Staff Discussion Paper 2009-11 Kimberly Beaton, René Lalonde, Corinne Luu
The financial crisis of 2007–09 has highlighted the importance of developments in financial conditions for real economic activity. The authors estimate the effect of current and past shocks to financial variables on U.S. GDP growth by constructing two growthbased financial conditions indexes (FCIs) that measure the contribution to quarterly (annualized) GDP growth from financial conditions.

Indebtedness and the Household Financial Health: An Examination of the Canadian Debt Service Ratio Distribution

Staff Working Paper 2008-46 Umar Faruqui
The household debt-to-disposable income ratio in Canada increased from 110 per cent in 1999 to 127 per cent in 2007. This increase has raised questions about the ability of households to service their increased debt if faced with a negative economic or socio-economic shock.
September 15, 2008

The Bank of Canada's Senior Loan Officer Survey

The Bank of Canada maintains regular contact with financial institutions as part of the information-gathering process that feeds into the larger set of information used to arrive at its monetary policy decision. Since 1999, the Bank has been conducting a quarterly survey of the business-lending practices of major Canadian financial institutions. Analysis of the information collected shows that it is correlated with future growth in both credit and business investment. This article focuses on how the survey is conducted and describes the construction of the summary statistics, highlighting the key statistical relationships in the historical survey data.
October 3, 2006

A New Effective Exchange Rate Index for the Canadian Dollar

An effective exchange rate is a measure of the value of a country's currency vis-à-vis the currencies of its most important trading partners. The Bank of Canada has created a new Canadian-dollar effective exchange rate index (CERI) to replace the C-6 index that it currently uses. The CERI uses multilateral trade weights published by the International Monetary Fund and includes the six currencies of countries or economic zones with the largest share of Canada's international trade. As such, it better reflects the recent changes in Canada's trade profile, including the rise in the importance of China and Mexico and the relative decline in importance of Europe and Japan in Canada's international trade. The author describes the methodology and construction of the new index and reviews the advantages it offers over the C-6, particularly the use of multilateral trade weights, the inclusion of trade in services, and the use of more recent trade data.
June 25, 2005

Changes in the Indicator Properties of Narrow Monetary Aggregates

Although many countries have abandoned monetary targeting in recent decades, monetary aggregates are still useful indicators of future economic activity. Past research has shown that, compared with other monetary aggregates and expressed in real terms, net M1 and gross M1 have traditionally provided superior leading information for output growth.
November 24, 2004

Asset Prices and Monetary Policy: A Canadian Perspective on the Issues

The issue addressed in this article is the extent to which monetary policy in Canada should respond to asset-price bubbles. The article concludes that maintaining low and stable consumer price inflation is the best contribution that monetary policy can make to promoting economic and financial stability, even when the economy experiences asset-price bubbles. In extreme circumstances—when an asset-price bubble is well identified and likely to have significant costs to the economy when it bursts—monetary policy might better maintain low and stable consumer price inflation by leaning against a particular bubble even though it may mean that inflation deviates temporarily from its target. Such a strategy might reduce the risk that a crash in asset prices could lead to a recession and to inflation markedly below target in the longer run. The circumstances where this strategy is possible will be rare because economists are far from being able to determine consistently and reliably when leaning against a particular bubble is likely to do more harm than good. Housing-price bubbles should be a greater concern for Canadian monetary policy than equity-price bubbles, since rising housing prices are more likely to reflect excessively easy domestic credit conditions than are equity prices, which are largely determined in global markets.

Dynamic Factor Analysis for Measuring Money

Staff Working Paper 2003-21 Paul Gilbert, Lise Pichette
Technological innovations in the financial industry pose major problems for the measurement of monetary aggregates. The authors describe work on a new measure of money that has a more satisfactory means of identifying and removing the effects of financial innovations.

How to Improve Inflation Targeting at the Bank of Canada

Staff Working Paper 2002-23 Nicholas Rowe
This paper shows that if the Bank of Canada is optimally adjusting its monetary policy instrument in response to inflation indicators to target 2 per cent inflation at a two-year horizon, then deviations of inflation from 2 per cent represent the Bank's forecast errors, and should be uncorrelated with its information set, which includes two-year lagged values of the instrument and the indicators. Positive or negative correlations are evidence of systematic errors in monetary policy.
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