This paper analyses the evolution of the monetary policy stance, communication and credibility of the South African Reserve Bank (SARB) since 2000, when it adopted a flexible Inflation Targeting (IT) regime to facilitate the achievement of its price stability mandate. Empirical results indicate that the stance became accommodative after the global financial crisis of 2009, with a tendency of the implicit inflation target to increase, while after 2014 it turned tighter and the implicit target started declining.
Interest Rates: Determination, Term Structure, and Effects
The paper investigates the effects of South African monetary policy implementation on selected macroeconomic variables in the rest of the Common Monetary Area (CMA) looking specifically at the response of a shock to South African key interest rate (repo rate) on macroeconomic variables such as the regional lending rates, interest rate spread, private sector credit, money supply, inflation and economic growth in the rest of the CMA countries. The analysis is conducted using impulse-response functions derived from Panel Vector Autoregression (PVAR) methodology.
This paper explores the correlations of the short- and long-term interest rate series through time in South Africa. Two time series techniques are utilized: the Kapetanios et al. (2003) nonlinear STAR unit root test and the asymmetric cointegration with threshold adjustment test of Enders and Siklos (2001). We find the interest rate series (i.e. the SARB policy rate and the yield on long-term government bonds) to be cointegrated with fairly weak threshold adjustment.
This paper establishes the prevailing financial factors that influence credit spread variability, and its impact on the U.S. business cycle over the Great Moderation and Great Recession periods. To do so, we develop a dynamic general equilibrium framework with a central role of financial intermediation and equity assets. Over the Great Moderation and Great Recession periods, we find an important role for bank market power (sticky rate adjustments and loan rate markups) on credit spread variability in the U.S. business cycle.
In 2002/03 the yield spread falsely signalled a downswing that never materialised. This paper provides two reasons for this false signal. Firstly, while the Reserve Bank never actually officially declared the start of a downswing, by other important measures a downswing did actually occur. It is to this slowing in economic activity at that time that the yield curve pointed. Secondly, short-term interest rates in 2003 were higher than they should have been because of a mistake made in measuring consumer price inflation.
Although informal finance forms a large part of their financial sector, nearly all low income countries exclude informal transactions in official monetary data. Usually, informal finance data are nonexistent and occasionally, they are available only from surveys that often occur at irregular intervals and mostly with incomparable data. Using two survey datasets, indigenous knowledge, and elements of Friedman’s data interpolation technique, this study constructs monthly time series of informal credit and interest rates for Malawi.