Real indeterminacy in monetary models with nominal interest rate distortions: the problem with inflation targets
This paper demonstrates that in a standard monetary model with a cash-in-advance constraint on consumption there exists real indeterminacy whenever the nominal interest rate moves too closely with the real rate. A particular example of such a policy is an inflation rate target. This is not a knife-edge result. The conclusion is robust to a wide range of calibrations and to a monetary environment that allows for endogenous velocity.
Timing and real indeterminacy in monetary models
An increasingly common approach to the theoretical analysis of monetary policy ensures that a proposed policy does not introduce real indeterminacy?and thus sunspot fluctuations?into the model economy. Policy is typically conducted in terms of directives for the nominal interest rate. This paper uses a discrete-time, money-in-the-utility function model to demonstrate how seemingly minor modifications in the trading environment result in dramatic differences in the policy restrictions needed to ensure real determinacy. These differences arise because of the differing pricing equations for the ...
Milton Friedman, teacher, 1912-2006
Nobel laureate Milton Friedman, who died on November 16, 2006, made monumental contributions to economics and changed the course of modern central banking. Many of his proposals for the conduct of monetary policy were controversial at the time he made them but are now widely accepted. This Commentary reviews some of them.
Capital trading, stock trading, and the inflation tax on equity: a note
The authors show that there is more responsiveness of consumption and output to changes in the money supply than exists in the standard neoclassical growth models.
Monetary policy and asset prices with imperfect credit markets
The Modigliani-Miller theorem is fundamental to the theory of corporate finance. One of the theorem's immediate implications is that there is no reason for the monetary authority to respond to asset prices. This article posits a world in which the Modigliani-Miller theorem does not hold. The authors assume that the amount of an entrepreneur's external financing is limited by the amount of collateral she holds. They examine the implications for the monetary authority in such an environment.
Imperfect capital markets and nominal wage rigidities
Should monetary policy respond to asset prices? This paper analyzes a general equilibrium model with imperfect capital markets and rigid nominal wages. Within the context of this model, there is a natural role for the benevolent central bank to dampen the real effects of asset price movements.
Money growth rules and price level determinacy
The authors show that in a plausibly calibrated monetary model with explicit production, exogenous money growth rules ensure real determinacy and thus avoid sunspot fluctuations. Although it is theoretically possible to construct examples in which real indeterminacy does arise, these examples rely on implausible money-demand elasticities or ignore the effect of production on the model?s dynamics.
Monetary policy and self-fulfilling expectations: the danger of forecasts
What rule should a central bank interested in inflation stability follow? Because monetary policy tends to work with lags, it is tempting to use inflation forecasts to generate policy advice. This article, however, suggests that the use of forecasts to drive policy is potentially destabilizing. The problem with forecast-based policy is that the economy becomes vulnerable to what economists term ?sunspot? fluctuations. These welfare-reducing fluctuations can be avoided by using a policy that puts greater weight on past, realized inflation rates rather than forecasted, future rates.
Term Premium Variability and Monetary Policy
Two traditional explanations for the mean and variability of the term premium are: (i) time-varying risk premia on long bonds, and (ii) segmented markets between long- and short-term bonds. This paper integrates these two approaches into a medium-scale DSGE model. We consider two sources of business cycle variability: shocks to total factor productivity (TFP), and shocks to the marginal efficiency of investment (MEI). The ability of the risk approach to match the first moment of the term premium depends upon the relative importance of these two shocks. If MEI shocks are an important driver of ...
Interest rate rules vs. money growth rules: a welfare comparison in a cash-in-advance economy
A consideration of the welfare consequences of two simple monetary policy rules--an interest rate peg and a money growth peg--in a dynamic general-equilibrium model, indicating that the interest rate rule dominates the money growth rule.