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The expectations trap hypothesis

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  • Lawrence J. Christiano
  • Christopher Gust

Abstract

This article explores a hypothesis about the take-off in inflation in the early 1970s. According to the expectations trap hypothesis, the Fed was driven to high money growth by a fear of violating the expectations of high inflation that existed at the time. The authors argue that this hypothesis is more compelling than the Phillips curve hypothesis, according to which the Fed produced the high inflation as an unfortunate by product of a conscious decision to jump start a weak economy.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago in its journal Economic Perspectives.

Volume (Year): (2000)
Issue (Month): Q II ()
Pages: 21-39

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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedhep:y:2000:i:qii:p:21-39:n:v.25no.2

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Keywords: Inflation (Finance) ; Phillips curve;

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References

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  1. Gali, J., 1996. "Technology, Employment, and the Business Cycle: Do Technology Shocks Explain Aggregate Fluctuations?," Working Papers, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University 96-28, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  2. V.V. Chari & Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum, 1996. "Expectation traps and discretion," Working Paper Series, Macroeconomic Issues WP-96-5, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  3. Susanto Basu & John Fernald, 2000. "Why is productivity procyclical? Why do we care?," Working Paper Series, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago WP-00-11, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  4. Athanasios Orphanides & Simon van Norden, 2002. "The Unreliability of Output-Gap Estimates in Real Time," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 84(4), pages 569-583, November.
  5. John B. Taylor, 1999. "Monetary Policy Rules," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number tayl99-1, October.
  6. Lawrence J. Christiano & Terry J. Fitzgerald, 2000. "Understanding the Fiscal Theory of the Price Level," NBER Working Papers 7668, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Hodrick, Robert J & Prescott, Edward C, 1997. "Postwar U.S. Business Cycles: An Empirical Investigation," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 29(1), pages 1-16, February.
  8. L.J. Christiano & C.J. Gust, 1999. "Taylor Rules in a Limited Participation Model," DNB Staff Reports (discontinued), Netherlands Central Bank 33, Netherlands Central Bank.
  9. Taylor, John B., 1993. "Discretion versus policy rules in practice," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 195-214, December.
  10. Christina D. Romer & David H. Romer, 1997. "Reducing Inflation: Motivation and Strategy," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number rome97-1, October.
  11. Martin S. Feldstein, 1997. "The Costs and Benefits of Going from Low Inflation to Price Stability," NBER Chapters, in: Reducing Inflation: Motivation and Strategy, pages 123-166 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. William Poole, 1999. "Monetary policy rules?," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Mar, pages 3-12.
  13. St-Amant, P. & van Norden, S., 1997. "Measurement of the Output Gap: A Discussion of Recent Research at the Bank of Canada," Technical Reports, Bank of Canada 79, Bank of Canada.
  14. Orphanides, Athanasios, 1999. "The Quest for Prosperity Without Inflation," Working Paper Series 93, Sveriges Riksbank (Central Bank of Sweden).
  15. Richard Clarida & Jordi Galí & Mark Gertler, 1997. "Monetary policy rules and macroeconomic stability: Evidence and some theory," Economics Working Papers 350, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised May 1999.
  16. Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum & Charles L. Evans, 1997. "Modeling money," Working Paper Series, Macroeconomic Issues WP-97-17, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  17. John H. Cochrane, 1998. "A Frictionless View of U.S. Inflation," NBER Working Papers 6646, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. William Kerr & Robert G. King, 1996. "Limits on interest rate rules in the IS model," Economic Quarterly, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, issue Spr, pages 47-75.
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