RIVISTA INTERNAZIONALE DI SCIENZE SOCIALI - 2007 - 4 - autori-vari - Vita e Pensiero - Fascicolo digitale Rivista internazionale di Scienze Sociali


Digital issue
Issue 4 - 2007
Publisher Vita e Pensiero
Format Digital issue | Pdf

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Central Bank Independence and Democracy: Does CorporatismMatter?
by Sergio Destefanis, Maria Olivella Rizza pages: 26 € 6.00
In this paper we test the hypothesis that central bank independence is closely correlated to social agreement about decisions on income distribution. Using data from a panel of OECD countries over the period 1972-2002 and controlling for several macroeconomic factors, we find evidence in favour of this hypothesis. When some indexes of corporatism are used to allow for the degree of social agreement on income distribution and its determination, the relationship between inflation and CBI weakens considerably. This evidence is consistent with the mechanism posited in Pittaluga - Cama (2004) according to which society formally endows the central bank with independence in order to safeguard a key principle of democracy, namely that decision-makers should be clearly responsible for their choices and actions.
National Economic Performance and Public Support for the EU
by Marco Montanari pages: 22 € 6.00
This paper analyses the relationship between national economic conditions and public support for the EU. Firstly, it proposes a simple conceptual framework, drawing on theories of utilitarian support and on the recent political economic literature on integration processes. Subsequently, it tests this framework against panel data on EU member countries. The findings show that economic benefits and costs shape citizens’ attitudes towards EU membership, but with differences over time and space. Our analysis challenges some previous findings of the literature on aggregate public support for the EU and may also shed some light on the problems encountered during ratification of the Constitutional Treaty.
Providing Content for ECB Announcements
by Carlo Rosa pages: 22 € 6.00
This paper proposes a new objective methodology for analysing the verbatim transcripts of central bank announcements. I apply a statistical method based on locally recurring word patterns, the descending hierarchical classification algorithm, to identify the characteristic themes of the monthly press conferences of the President of the ECB. The econometric evidence suggests that these press conferences convey information to the public. Moreover, the reaction of market rates strongly depends on the principal themes of the statement.
How Does Information Affect the Comovement Between Interest Rates and Exchange Rates?
by M. Sànchez pages: 16 € 6.00
This paper sets up a small open economy model to compare the link between exchange rates and interest rates under full and imperfect information. The informational friction considered here corresponds to the case where the central bank, while failing to observe output and inflation, can extract some information about these variables from the private sector (asymmetric information with signal extraction). This informational friction generates an optimal deviation from the full information outcome, with the realisation of a relatively less frequent shock leading the central bank to behave as if a more likely disturbance had instead taken place. This indicates that policies that would be optimal under full information are not optimal when knowledge is imperfect.

Note e discussioni

Macroeconomia e Autorganizzazione: un nuovo contributo.
Nota di discussione a: MASANAO AOKI - HIROSHI YOKISHAWA,
Reconstructing Macroeconomics – A Perspective from Statistical Mechanics and Combinatorial Stochastic Processes
by Marco Arnone pages: 16 € 6.00
This discussion paper critically reviews a new book by Aoki and Yokishawa and presents some of the techniques adopted by the authors as a new approach to the foundations of macroeconomics. The paper discusses some of the main techniques of statistical mechanics relevant in this context, namely the Master Equation and the Polya Urn. The former is a key instrument for deriving some Keynesian results throughout the book, in particular the role of effective demand in stimulating the economy; additionally, it is used to assess the role and significance of uncertainty and to re-examine so-called «policy ineffectiveness», showing instead the positive contribution of an active economic policy. The Polya Urn is used to show demand saturation as a growth limiting factor and demand for new products as a growth-enhancing one, with the clear objective of linking the Keynesian principle of effective demand (short term) with a long-term growth theory.


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