Ethan Ilzetzki's picture
Affiliation: 
London School of Economics

Voting history

Should the ECB Reformulate its Inflation Objective?

Question 3: Which of the following best reflects your opinion on the following statement? “The ECB should explicitly recognize unemployment and/or economic growth as a secondary aim, secondary to its price stability mandate.”

Answer:
Agree
Confidence level:
Confident

Question 2: Would you support increasing the ECB’s inflation target to a higher rate of inflation than the current 2% target?

Answer:
Neither support nor oppose
Confidence level:
Not confident

Question 1: Which of the following best reflects your opinion on the following statement? “The ECB should explicitly state that it will allow inflation to temporarily exceed the 2% target following extended periods of low inflation.”

Answer:
Strongly agree
Confidence level:
Extremely confident
Comment:
A maximum rate of inflation was never a coherent target. The central bank was unable to guarantee that it would meet such a target and such a target isn't desirable. An upper bound perhaps made sense for a young central bank attempting to gain credibility, but certainly not a central bank entering its third decade and finding it hard to increase inflation expectations.

The Economic Cost of School Closures

Question 3: To what extent will school closures increase gender inequality due to unequal gender distribution of the burden of school closures?

Answer:
To a small degree but persistently
Confidence level:
Confident
Comment:
The burden of school closures has fallen very unequally along gender lines. This will clearly cause an increase in gender inequality on the margin and this damage may be permanent without mitigating policy measures. It is hard to assess the magnitude of this damage with current data. My hunch is that the social forces pushing for greater gender inequality will contain the damages, but larger damages are possible depending on the duration of the pandemic.

Question 2: To what extent will school closures increase inequality in human capital development?

Answer:
By a large amount and persistently
Confidence level:
Not confident
Comment:
Schools have been closed for roughly one third of a year. Evidence from summer holidays is clear that closures cause a lot of forgetting, so that the damage to less advantaged pupils without home schooling resources is already roughly equivalent to one year of lost school. This contrasts with higher income pupils in private education, who received numerous hours of online lessons during this time. It is very likely that schools will be closed again in the fall. The government has made a conscious decision that opening (and subsidising!) pubs and restaurants is more important than children's education. These hasty policies risk a second wave that will likely lead to further school closures. The damage to the education of low-income children is irreparable.

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