Gros, Daniel and Hefeker, Carsten. (2000) One Size Must Fit All: National Divergences in a Monetary Union. CEPS Working Documents No. 149, July 2000. [Working Paper]
What policy objective should a common central bank in a heterogeneous monetary union pursue? Should it base its decisions on the EU-wide average of inflation and growth or should it instead focus on (appropriately weighted) national welfare losses based on national rates of inflation and growth? We find that a central bank that minimises the sum of national welfare losses reacts less to common shocks and that this can lead to higher average union-wide expected welfare, if the variability of common shocks is large relative to the inflation bias. But for countries with a transmission mechanism close to the average, welfare can actually be lower in this case. The inflationary bias depends on the interaction between the transmission mechanism and distortions in labour markets.
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