Abstract

This paper empirically assesses whether monetary policy affects real economic activity through its affect on the aggregate supply side of the macroeconomy. Analysts typically argue that monetary policy either does not affect the real economy, the classical dichotomy, or only affects the real economy in the short run through aggregate demand new Keynesian or new classical theories. Real business cycle theorists try to explain the business cycle with supply-side productivity shocks. We provide some preliminary evidence about how monetary policy affects the aggregate supply side of the macroeconomy through its affect on total factor productivity, an important measure of supply-side performance. The results show that monetary policy exerts a positive and statistically significant effect on the supply-side of the macroeconomy. Moreover, the findings buttress the importance of countercyclical monetary policy as well as support the adoption of an optimal money supply rule. Our results also prove consistent with the effective role of monetary policy in the Great Moderation as well as the more recent rise in productivity growth.

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