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Data for ""Majority Rule, Consensus Building, and the Power of the Chairman: Arthur Burns and the FOMC," by Henry Chappell, Rob Roy McGregor and Todd Vermilyea.

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Data is Arranged in Three Segments:

1. Estimation of Individual Reaction Functions
2. Estimation of Committee Decision-Making Models
3. Time-Series Properties of the Data
4. Appendix Available from the Authors

1. Estimation of Individual Reaction Functions

For all files listed below, click with the right mouse button and choose "Save Target Ss" to initiate a download.

The 2 tsp program files below estimate an individual reaction function for Morris (an example, there are corresponding files for each individual -- available below):

morr.tsp

morr2.tsp

The files differ only in storing the results. "morr.tsp" stores desired interest rates for Morris when Morris was a voting member of the FOMC. "morr2.tsp" stores desired interest rates for Morris when Morris was a non-voting member of the FOMC. Estimates of the individual reaction functions are identical.

Similar programs for each of the other individuals are contained in this zip file:

IndividualReactionFunctions.zip

These files read in two data files in excel format:

ffrabl5p.xls

greenbk6.xls

These files are also available as tab-delimited text files:

ffrabl5p.txt

greenbk6.txt

"ffrabl5p.xls" contains the original data describing members' preferences. The items are defined as follows:

ffrabl5p.xls data  
year, month, day These variables indicated the date of the meeting
time This variable takes values 1, ..., 99 for the 99 meeting dates in the data sample.
staffmd The "staff midpoint" funds rate proposal
targetr The adopted funds rate proposal
rweek The average funds rate prevailing in the week before the meeting
weekr The average funds rate prevailing in the week after the meeting
rmeet The average funds rate prevailing in the inter-meeting period prior to the current meeting
meetr The average funds rate prevailing in the inter-meeting period after the current meeting
Variables for Morris These 4 variables (directly below) are redefined for each member in the data set.
Only the first 4 letters of the variable name are changed for different members. For example, replace "morr" with "blac" to measure the same variables for Black rather than Morris.
morrp Characterizes leaning positions. Defined to equal (1,0,-1 ) for (tight, assent, ease). May also be missing.
morr5 If a members desired federal funds rate is stated, this variable records that desired funds rate.
morra namea is equal to 1 to indicate a committee member who was an alternate; is equal to 2 to indicate a committee member who was a voter.
morrd If the member speaks before Burns in the meeting,  this variable is equal to 0; if the member speaks after Burns, this variable is equal to 1.
Variables for Burns  
burnd This variable is coded differently for Burns only. If Burns speaks in the first half of the speaking order, burnd is set equal to 0; if Burns speaks in the second half of the speaking order, burnd is set equal to 1.
burno This variable is measured for Burns only.  If Burns was clearly stating his own preference, burn0 is set equal to 1. If it is not clear that Burns was stating his own preference, burno is set equal to 0.

"greenbk6.xls" contains macroeconomic forecasts from Greenbooks prepared for the FOMC. These variables appear as explanatory variables in individual reaction functions.

greenbk6.xls data  
meeting date The date of the meeting
time This variable takes values 169, ..., 267 for the 99 meeting dates in the data sample.
un0 Current quarter forecast for the unemployment rate.
un1 1-quarter ahead forecast for the unemployment rate.
rgnp0 Current quarter forecast for real gnp growth.
rgnp1 1-quarter ahead forecast for real gnp growth.
defl0 Current quarter forecast for inflation (derived from the gnp deflator)
defl1 1-quarter ahead forecast for inflation (derived from the gnp deflator)
m1dot money growth rate, derived from M1, for the three month period prior to the month of the meeting.

The programs that estimate individual reaction functions are also used to impute desired federal funds rates for FOMC members. The series of desired federal funds rates (combining explicitly stated and imputed measures) are summarized in two spreadsheets (one for voting members, one for non-voting members):

rdatvotr.xls

rdatalt.xls

Committee means and medians (and other variables) are constructed using these data. Datasets including these variables are described in the next section.

2. Estimation of Committee Decision-Making Models

All of the variables and programs described in this section are included in the following zip file:

CommitteeDecisionModels.Zip (To download, right mouse click, then choose "save target as")

Each column in Tables 3 and 4 in the paper represents the output of a single TSP program. The programs are named according to the following convention:

btij.tsp gives the estimation that produces the result in Table i, column j. 

For example, bt46.tsp gives results for Table 4, column 6.

Each program presents OLS results; results of bootstrapping to produce correct p-values as described in Section V. of the Appendix are also provided in each program.

Each of these programs reads burnsdat.tlb as the source of data. This file includes the variables:

targetr
mean
median
burns
altmean
altmed
meanbp
meangov

These variables are also available in an excel spreadsheet and in a tab-delimited text file.

3. Time Series Properties of the Data

Section IV of the Appendix to the paper contains results of unit root and cointegration tests. All data and tests, as well as a "readme" file are contained in the zip file below:

TimeSeriesAppendix.zip (To download, right mouse click, then choose "save target as")

4. Appendix Available from the Authors

Our article references an appendix available from the authors. That appendix is provided below:

JMCB_Appendix.pdf

chappell@moore.sc.edu  |  Phone 803-777-4940  |  Fax: 803-777-6876