Bis Paper 65 Threat of Fiscal Dominance?

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Threat of fiscal dominance?
A BIS/OECD workshop on policy interactions between fiscal policy, monetary policy and government debt management after the financial crisis Basel, 2 December 2011

Monetary and Economic Department
May 2012

Papers in this volume were prepared for the joint BIS and OECD workshop on “Policy interaction: fiscal policy, monetary policy and government debt management”, held in Basel on 2 December 2011. The views expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the BIS or the central banks represented at the meeting. Individual papers (or excerpts thereof) may be reproduced or translated with the authorisation of the authors concerned.

This publication is available on the BIS website (

© Bank for International Settlements 2012. All rights reserved. Brief excerpts may be reproduced or translated provided the source is stated.

ISSN 1609-0381 (print) ISBN 92-9131-135-9 (print) ISSN 1682 7651 (online) ISBN 92-9197-135-9 (online)

The massive expansion of central bank balance sheets to contain the worst financial crisis in living memory raises questions about the theory and practice of monetary policy. The persistence in many advanced countries of large fiscal deficits and the prospect of high public debt/GDP ratios for many years is likely, at some point, to create policy dilemmas not only for central banks but also for public debt managers. Some countries have already had to cope with higher sovereign risk. Worries about both “fiscal dominance” and “financial repression” have certainly gained ground. Whatever view is taken of this, the boundary between monetary policy and government debt management has become increasingly blurred. Policy interactions have changed in ways that are difficult to understand. The current delineation of policy mandates may need to be reassessed. The…...

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