The IMF Working Papers series is designed to make IMF staff research available to a wide audience. Almost 300 Working Papers are released each year, covering a wide range of theoretical and analytical topics, including balance of payments, monetary and fiscal issues, global liquidity, and national and international economic developments.
This paper compares the hypothetical performance of various monetary policy rules with that of the discretionary policies actually pursued in Japan over the 1986-91 period. The results suggest that simple rules based on targeting growth in either the money supply, nominal income, or prices would have failed to stabilize economic variables more successfully than discretionary policies. At the same time, it appears that an indicator of monetary conditions incorporating movements in the real exchange rate and the real interest rate would have been useful in assessing the effect of current policies on future activity.