Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond
Indeterminacy and Learning: An Analysis of Monetary Policy in the Great Inflation
We argue in this paper that the Great Inflation of the 1970s can be understood as the result of equilibrium indeterminacy in which loose monetary policy engendered excess volatility in macroeconomic aggregates and prices. We show, however, that the Federal Reserve inadvertently pursued policies that were not anti-inflationary enough because it did not fully understand the economic environment it was operating in. Specifically, it had imperfect knowledge about the structure of the U.S. economy and it was subject to data misperceptions. The real-time data flow at that time did not capture the true state of the economy, as large subsequent revisions showed. It is the combination of learning about the economy and, more importantly, the use of data riddled with measurement error that resulted in policies, which the Federal Reserve believed to be optimal, but when implemented led to equilibrium indeterminacy in the economy.
Cite this item
Thomas A. Lubik & Christian Matthes, Indeterminacy and Learning: An Analysis of Monetary Policy in the Great Inflation, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, Working Paper 14-2, 31 Jan 2014.
- C11 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Bayesian Analysis: General
- C32 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Time-Series Models; Dynamic Quantile Regressions; Dynamic Treatment Effect Models; Diffusion Processes; State Space Models
- E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy
Keywords: Federal Reserve; Great Moderation; Bayesian Estimation; Least Squares Learning
This item with handle RePEc:fip:fedrwp:14-02
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