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Project Citation: 

Bauer, Michael D., and Swanson, Eric T. Data and Code for “An Alternative Explanation for the ‘Fed Information Effect.’” Nashville, TN: American Economic Association [publisher], 2023. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2023-02-17.

Project Description

Summary:  View help for Summary
High-frequency changes in interest rates around FOMC announcements are a standard method of measuring monetary policy shocks.  However, some recent studies have documented puzzling effects of these shocks on private-sector forecasts of GDP, unemployment, or inflation that are opposite in sign to what standard macroeconomic models would predict. This evidence has been viewed as supportive of a "Fed information effect" channel of monetary policy, whereby an FOMC tightening (easing) communicates that the economy is stronger (weaker) than the public had expected.  We show that these empirical results are also consistent with a "Fed response to news" channel, in which incoming, publicly available economic news causes both the Fed to change monetary policy and the private sector to revise its forecasts.  We provide substantial new evidence that distinguishes between these two channels  and strongly favors the latter; for example, (i) regressions that include the previously omitted public economic news, (ii) a new survey that we conduct of Blue Chip forecasters, and (iii) high-frequency financial market responses to FOMC announcements all suggest that the Fed and private sector are simply responding to the same public news, with relatively little role for a "Fed information effect".
Funding Sources:  View help for Funding Sources Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation) (425909451)

Scope of Project

Subject Terms:  View help for Subject Terms Federal Reserve; forecasts; survey; Blue Chip; Delphic forward guidance
JEL Classification:  View help for JEL Classification
      E43 Interest Rates: Determination, Term Structure, and Effects
      E52 Monetary Policy
      E58 Central Banks and Their Policies
Geographic Coverage:  View help for Geographic Coverage United States
Time Period(s):  View help for Time Period(s) 1/1/1990 – 6/30/2019
Collection Date(s):  View help for Collection Date(s) 11/15/2017 – 10/11/2022

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