Interest rate policies for price stability
AUTHORS: Brayton, Flint; Tinsley, Peter A.
Nominal income targeting with the monetary base as instrument: an evaluation of McCallum's rule
AUTHORS: Hess, Gregory D.; Small, David H.; Brayton, Flint
The behavior of monetary sectors and monetary policy: evidence from multicountry models
AUTHORS: Brayton, Flint; Marquez, Jaime R.
What's happened to the Phillips curve?
The simultaneous occurrence in the second half of the 1990s of low and falling price inflation and low unemployment appears to be at odds with the properties of a standard Phillips curve. We find this result in a model in which inflation depends on the unemployment rate, past inflation, and conventional measures of price supply shocks. We show that, in such a model, long lags of past inflation are preferred to short lags, and that with long lags, the NAIRU is estimated precisely but is unstable in the 1990s. Two alternative modifications to the standard Phillips curve restore stability. One replaces the unemployment rate with capacity utilization. Although this change leads to more accurate inflation predictions in the recent period, the predictive ability of the utilization rate is not superior to that of the unemployment rate for the 1955 to 1998 sample as a whole. The second, and preferred, modification augments the standard Phillips curve to include an "error-correction" mechanism involving the markup of prices over trend unit labor costs. With the markup relatively high through much of the 1990s, this channel is estimated to have held down inflation over this period, and thus provides an explanation of the recent low inflation.
AUTHORS: Roberts, John M.; Williams, John C.; Brayton, Flint
The Evolution of Macro Models at the Federal Reserve Board
Large-scale macroeconomic models have been used at the Federal Reserve Board for nearly thirty years. After briefly reviewing the first generation of Fed models, which were based on the IS/LM/Phillips curve paradigm, the paper describes the structure and properties of a new set of models. The new models are more explicit in their treatment of expectations formation and household and firm intertemporal decisionmaking. The incorporation of more rigorous theoretical microfoundations is accomplished while maintaining a high standard of goodness of fit. Simulations illustrate the effects of alternative assumptions about the formation of expectations and policy credibility on system properties.
AUTHORS: Brayton, Flint; Levin, Andrew T.; Tryon, Ralph W.; Williams, John C.
A guide to FRB/US: a macroeconomic model of the United States
FRB/US is a large-scale quarterly econometric model of the U.S. economy, developed to replace the MPS model. Most behavioral equations are based on specifications of optimizing behavior containing explicit expectations of firms, households, and financial markets. Although expectations are explicit, the empirical fits of the structural descriptions of macroeconomic behavior are comparable to those of reduced-form time series models. In most instances, tests do not reject overidentifying restrictions of rational expectations or the hypothesis of serially independent residuals. As modeled, private sector expectations of policy constitute a major transmission channel of monetary policy.
AUTHORS: Brayton, Flint; Tinsley, Peter A.
Two practical algorithms for solving rational expectations models
This paper describes the E-Newton and E-QNewton algorithms for solving rational expectations (RE) models. Both algorithms treat a model's RE terms as exogenous variables whose values are iteratively updated until they (hopefully) satisfy the RE requirement. In E-Newton, the updates are based on Newton's method; E-QNewton uses an efficient form of Broyden's quasi-Newton method. The paper shows that the algorithms are reliable, fast enough for practical use on a mid-range PC, and simple enough that their implementation does not require highly specialized software. The evaluation of the algorithms is based on experiments with three well-known macro models--the Smets-Wouters (SW) model, EDO, and FRB/US--using code written in EViews, a general-purpose, easy-to-use software package. The models are either linear (SW and EDO) or mildly nonlinear (FRB/US). A test of the robustness of the algorithms in the presence of substantial nonlinearity is based on modified versions of each model that include a smoothed form of the constraint that the short-term rate of interest cannot fall below zero. In two single-simulation experiments with the standard and modified versions of the models, E-QNewton is found to be faster than E-Newton, except for solutions of small-to-medium sized linear models. In a multi-simulation experiment using the standard versions of the models, E-Newton dominates E-QNewton.
AUTHORS: Brayton, Flint
Here's looking at you: modelling and policy use of auction price expectations
AUTHORS: Brayton, Flint; Kan, William; Tinsley, Peter A.; Peter von zur Muehlen
The role of expectations in the FRB/US macroeconomic model
In the past year, the staff of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System began using a new macroeconomic model of the U.S. economy referred to as the FRB/US model. This system of mathematical equations, describing interactions among economic measures such as inflation, interest rates, and gross domestic product, is one of the tools used in economic forecasting and the analysis of macroeconomic policy issues at the Board. The FRB/US model replaces the MPS model, which, with periodic revisions, had been used at the Federal Reserve Board since the early 1970s. A key feature of the new model is that expectations of future economic conditions are explicit in many of its equations. Because of this clear delineation of expectations, the FRB/US model can be used to study issues that would be difficult or impossible to study with the MPS model. For example, the new model can show how the economy's response to specific events, such as a reduction in defense spending, may vary considerably with the speed at which the public recognizes that the event has occurred or will occur.
AUTHORS: Brayton, Flint; Mauskopf, Eileen; Reifschneider, David L.; Tinsley, Peter A.; Williams, John
Structure and uses of the MPS quarterly econometric model of the United States
AUTHORS: Brayton, Flint; Mauskopf, Eileen