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Review of Economics

Jahrbuch für Wirtschaftswissenschaften

Editor-in-Chief: Berlemann, Michael

Ed. by Haucap, Justus / Thum, Marcel

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How Informative Are Central Bank Minutes?

Mikael Apel
  • Monetary Policy Department, Sveriges Riksbank
  • Email:
/ Marianna Blix Grimaldi
  • General Staff Department, The Swedish National Debt Office
  • Email:
Published Online: 2016-02-11 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/roe-2014-0104


One characteristic feature of central banks today is that policy decisions are almost exclusively made by a committee rather than by a single policy maker. Another is that central banks endeavour to be transparent. Together, this has brought to the fore an important but so far unresolved issue: how much information about the committee’s deliberations should the central bank reveal? Does this kind of information make monetary policy easier to understand and predict, or does it make it harder? We address this issue by employing a novel method. We measure the sentiment and tone of the minutes of the Swedish central bank using an automated content analysis that converts the qualitative information in the minutes to a quantitative measure. We find that this measure is helpful in predicting future policy rate decisions.

Keywords: Central Bank Communication; Minutes; Content Analysis

About the article

Published Online: 2016-02-11

Published in Print: 2014-04-01

Citation Information: Review of Economics, ISSN (Online) 2366-035X, ISSN (Print) 0948-5139, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/roe-2014-0104. Export Citation

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