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Mr. Tamim Bayoumi and Mr. Reginald Darius
This paper examines the role of credit markets in the transmission of U.S. macro-financial shocks through the prism of a financial conditions index (FCI) based on a vector autoregression (VAR) methodology. It explores the relative predictive power of market variables compared to credit standards/conditions. The main conclusion is that under plausible specifications credit conditions dominate market variables, highlighting the importance of credit supply. The fact that direct measures of credit conditions anticipate future movements in asset prices has an extremely important implication. Most models of the credit channel see it as an amplifier of underlying changes in financial wealth. The impact of credit conditions on growth compared to other market variables implies that credit supply drives other financial variables rather than responding to them.
Mr. John Kiff, Jihad Alwazir, Sonja Davidovic, Aquiles Farias, Mr. Ashraf Khan, Mr. Tanai Khiaonarong, Majid Malaika, Mr. Hunter K Monroe, Nobu Sugimoto, Hervé Tourpe, and Peter Zhou
This paper examines key considerations around central bank digital currency (CBDC) for use by the general public, based on a comprehensive review of recent research, central bank experiments, and ongoing discussions among stakeholders. It looks at the reasons why central banks are exploring retail CBDC issuance, policy and design considerations; legal, governance and regulatory perspectives; plus cybersecurity and other risk considerations. This paper makes a contribution to the CBDC literature by suggesting a structured framework to organize discussions on whether or not to issue CBDC, with an operational focus and a project management perspective.
Andrea Deghi and Mr. Jerome Vandenbussche
This paper assesses whether corporate liquidity needs in the G7 economies were met during the containment phase of the COVID-19 pandemic (February-June 2020) using various approaches to identify credit supply shocks. The pandemic crisis adversely affected nonfinancial corporate sector cash flows, generating liquidity and solvency pressures. However, corporate borrowing surged in March and into the second quarter, thanks to credit line drawdowns and unprecedented policy support. In the United States, the bond market was buoyant from the end of March onward, but credit supply conditions for bank loans and the syndicated loan market tightened. In other G7 economies, credit supply conditions generally eased somewhat across markets during the second quarter. Among listed firms, entities with weaker liquidity or solvency positions before the onset of COVID-19, as well as smaller firms, suffered relatively more financial stress in some economies in the early stages of the crisis. Residual signs of strain remained as of the end of June. Policy interventions, especially those directly targeting the corporate sector, had a beneficial effect on credit supply overall.
Mr. Tommaso Mancini Griffoli, Mr. Maria Soledad Martinez Peria, Mr. Itai Agur, Mr. Anil Ari, Mr. John Kiff, Ms. Adina Popescu, and Ms. Celine Rochon
Digitalization is reshaping economic activity, shrinking the role of cash, and spurring new digital forms of money. Central banks have been pondering wheter and how to adapt. One possibility is central bank digital currency (CBDC)-- a widely accessible digital form of fiat money that could be legal tender. This discussion note proposes a conceptual framework to assess the case for CBDC adoption from the perspective of users and central banks. It discusses possible CBDC designs, and explores potential benefits and costs, with a focus on the impact on monetary policy, financial stability, and integrity. This note also surveys research and pilot studies on CBDC by central banks around the world.