Browsing Doctoral Degrees (Economics) by browse.metadata.advisor "Du Plessis, Alexander"
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- ItemCommunication as a strategic monetary policy tool : an evaluation of the effectiveness of the South African Reserve Bank's communication(Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2011-12) Reid, Monique Brigitte; Du Plessis, Alexander; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences. Dept. of Economics.ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The effectiveness of monetary policy depends importantly on the expectations of the private sector, as it is largely through this channel of the transmission mechanism that policy changes are transmitted to long-term interest rates. This has increased the emphasis on the role of central bank communication as a monetary policy tool. Successful communication is essential both to enhance the effectiveness of monetary policy and to build support for the institutional framework within which monetary policy is implemented. While the large and growing literature on central bank communication over the past decade has delivered strong support for the important role of central bank communication, there is less agreement about what the optimal communication strategy is. Furthermore, research has been limited mainly to studies of communication between central banks and the financial markets. In an evaluation of progress in the literature, Blinder et al. (2008) highlight the need to examine the interaction between central banks and the rest of the private sector (the general public) as well. The objective of this PhD dissertation is to evaluate the South African Reserve Bank’s (SARB’s) use of communication as a monetary policy tool. Special focus is given to communication with the inattentive general public, who set prices in the labour market and the market for goods and services. Different aspects of the SARB’s communication were studied, including the consistency of the South African Reserve Bank’s communication, the transmission of this communication via the media to the general public, and the process by which the general public gathers and processes the information on inflation. An evaluation of the SARB’s communications (its original messages) provided some evidence that the SARB has succeeded in communicating consistently over the inflation targeting period. This was followed by an assessment of the role of the media in transmitting the original communications to the general public. The results suggest that South African media reports generally show a lack of critical assessment of monetary policy decisions and that the inter-meeting communication by the SARB is ineffective at influencing these. An important challenge is for the SARB to consider how it can participate more actively in the economic discussion at this level and how it can build productive strategic relationships with the media. The final section of this dissertation explores the process by which the general public forms its inflation expectations, relying on epidemiological models to describe the spread of inflation information and to estimate the speed at which the general public, in aggregate, updates their inflation expectations. This estimate of the speed of adjustment will be valuable to future research that aims to build a Phillips curve in a new way for South Africa. A well-modelled Phillips curve will both improve the monitoring of the impact of monetary policy and inform future policy design and implementation.