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December 10, 2019

SVARs, the central bank balance sheet and the effects of unconventional monetary policy in the euro area

Publication

This discussion paper presents further evidence that the most important published estimates of the effects of unconventional monetary policy are not reliable. It is a further elaboration of the ideas in the CPB discussion paper "Do zero and sign restricted SVARs identify unconventional monetary policy shocks in the euro area?". Previous empirical studies seem to show that the unconventional monetary policy of the ECB, also known as balance sheet policy, has a positive effect on growth and inflation. However, this conclusion is unfounded, because institutional features of monetary policy in the euro area make it impossible to identify unexpectedly exogenous variation in monetary policy.