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Jel Classification:E40 

Report
Do Monetary Policy Announcements Shift Household Expectations?

We use a decade of daily survey data from Gallup to study how monetary policy influences households’ beliefs about economic conditions. We first document that public confidence in the state of the economy reacts instantaneously to certain types of macroeconomic news. Next, we show that surprises to the federal funds target rate are among the news that have statistically significant and instantaneous effects on economic confidence. Specifically, we find that a surprise increase in the target rate robustly leads to an immediate decline in household confidence, at odds with previous findings ...
Staff Reports , Paper 897

Report
Fiat Value in the Theory of Value

We explore monetary policy in a world without currency. In our world, money is a form of government debt that bears interest, which can be negative as well as positive. Services of money are a factor of production. We show that the national accounts must be revised in this world. Using our baseline economy, we determine the balanced growth paths for a set of money interest rate target policy regimes. Besides this interest rate, the only policy variable that differs across regimes is either the labor income tax rate or the inflation rate. We find that Friedman monetary satiation without ...
Staff Report , Paper 530

Working Paper
The COVID-19 Crisis and the Federal Reserve's Policy Response

The COVID-19 pandemic and the mitigation efforts put in place to contain it delivered the most severe blow to the U.S. economy since the Great Depression. In this paper, we argue that the Federal Reserve acted decisively and with dispatch to deploy all the tools in its conventional kit and to design, develop, and launch within weeks a series of innovative facilities to support the flow of credit to households and businesses. These measures, taken together, provided crucial support to the economy in 2020 and are continuing to contribute to what is expected to be a robust economic recovery in ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2021-035

Working Paper
Why Have Interest Rates Fallen Far Below the Return on Capital

Risk-free rates have been falling since the 1980s while the return on capital has not. We analyze these trends in a calibrated OLG model with recursive preferences, designed to encompass many of the "usual suspects'' cited in the debate on secular stagnation. Declining labor force and productivity growth imply a limited decline in real interest rates and deleveraging cannot account for the joint decline in the risk free rate and increase in the risk premium. If we allow for a change in the (perceived) risk to productivity growth to fit the data, we find that the decline in the risk-free rate ...
Working Paper Series , Paper WP-2018-1

Working Paper
Bubbly Recessions

We develop a tractable rational bubbles model with financial frictions, downward nominal wage rigidity, and the zero lower bound. The interaction of financial frictions and nominal rigidities leads to a "bubbly pecuniary externality," where competitive speculation in risky bubbly assets can result in excessive investment booms that precede inefficient busts. The collapse of a large bubble can push the economy into a "secular stagnation" equilibrium, where the zero lower bound and the nominal wage rigidity constraint bind, leading to a persistent and inefficient recession. We evaluate a ...
Working Paper , Paper 18-5

Working Paper
Monetary policy and the corporate bond market: How important is the Fed information effect?

Does expansionary monetary policy drive up prices of risky assets? Or, do investors interpret monetary policy easing as a signal that economic fundamentals are weaker than they previously believed, prompting riskier asset prices to fall? We test these competing hypotheses within the U.S. corporate bond market and find evidence strongly in favor of the second explanation—known as the "Fed information effect". Following an unanticipated monetary policy tightening (easing), returns on corporate bonds with higher credit risk outperform (underperform). We conclude that monetary policy surprises ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2021-010

Working Paper
Optimal Taxes Under Private Information: The Role of the Inflation

We consider an overlapping generation framework with search and private information to study optimal taxation. Agents sequentially trade in markets that are characterized by different frictions and trading protocols. In frictional decentralized markets, agents receive shocks that determine if they are going to be consumers or producers. Shocks are private information. Mechanism design is used to solve for the constrained optimal allocation. We then study whether a government can replicate the constrained optimal allocation with an array of policy instruments including fiat money. We show that ...
Working Papers , Paper 2017-014

Working Paper
Can currency competition work?

Can competition work among privately issued fiat currencies such as Bitcoin or Ethereum? Only sometimes. To show this, we build a model of competition among privately issued fiat currencies. We modify the current workhorse of monetary economics, the Lagos-Wright environment, by including entrepreneurs who can issue their own fiat currencies in order to maximize their utility. Otherwise, the model is standard. We show that there exists an equilibrium in which price stability is consistent with competing private monies but also that there exists a continuum of equilibrium trajectories with the ...
Working Papers , Paper 16-12

Journal Article
An Attractive Monetary Model with Surprising Implications for Optima: Two Examples

Ex ante optima are described for two examples of a monetary model with random meetings, some perfectly monitored people, and some nonmonitored people. One example describes optimal inflation, the other optimal seasonal policy. Although the numerical examples are arbitrary in most respects, the results are consistent with three general conclusions: if the model is known, then intervention is desirable; even the qualitative aspects of optimal intervention are not obvious; and optimal intervention depends on the details of the model. The results are therefore reminiscent of the conclusions of ...
Quarterly Review , Issue March , Pages 1-16

Working Paper
Monetary Policy Uncertainty

We construct new measures of uncertainty about Federal Reserve policy actions and their consequences - monetary policy uncertainty (MPU) indexes. We show that, under a variety of VAR identification schemes, positive shocks to uncertainty about monetary policy robustly raise credit spreads and reduce output. The effects are of comparable magnitude to those of conventional monetary policy shocks. We evaluate the usefulness of our MPU indexes, and examine the influence of Fed communication. Our analysis suggests that policy rate normalization that is accompanied by reduced uncertainty can help ...
International Finance Discussion Papers , Paper 1215

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Baughman, Garth 3 items

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