December 2015 issue contents
How Much Does the Public Know about the ECB's Monetary Policy? Evidence from a Survey of Dutch Households

by Carin van der Cruijsen,a David-Jan Jansena and Jakob de Haana, b, c


Does the general public know what central banks do? Is this knowledge relevant? Based on a survey of Dutch households, we find that knowledge about the European Central Bank's objectives is far from perfect. A weak desire to be informed and unawareness among respondents about their limited knowledge are barriers for improving general understanding of monetary policy. However, our results also show that more intensive use of information improves respondents' understanding of the ECB, suggesting that communication may improve general knowledge. Finally, we find that knowledge about monetary policy objectives contributes to an individual's ability to form inflation expectations.

JEL Codes: D12, D84, E52, E58.

Full article (PDF, 50 pages, 813 kb)

a De Nederlandsche Bank 
b University of Groningen
c CESifo