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Hyperbolic Discounting and Positive Optimal Inflation

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  • Liam Graham
  • Dennis Snower

Abstract

The Friedman rule states that steady-state welfare is maximized when there is deflation at the real rate of interest. Recent work by Khan et al (2003) uses a richer model but still finds deflation optimal. In an otherwise standard new Keynesian model we show that, if households have hyperbolic discounting, small positive rates of inflation can be optimal. In our baseline calibration, the optimal rate of inflation is 2.1% and remains positive across a wide range of calibrations.

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Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 3464.

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Date of creation: 2011
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Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_3464

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Keywords: optimal monetary policy; inflation targeting; unemployment; Phillips curve; nominal inertia; monetary policy;

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References

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  1. Hasan Bakhshi & Pablo Burriel-Llombart, 2003. "Endogenous Price Stickiness, Trend Inflation, and the New Keynesian Phillips Curve," Computing in Economics and Finance 2003 12, Society for Computational Economics.
  2. Liam Graham & Dennis J. Snower, 2007. "Hyperbolic Discounting and the Phillips Curve," Kiel Working Papers 1346, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
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  5. Christopher J. Erceg & Dale W. Henderson & Andrew T. Levin, 1999. "Optimal monetary policy with staggered wage and price contracts," International Finance Discussion Papers, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.) 640, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
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  7. Roberto M. Billi & George A. Kahn, 2008. "What is the optimal inflation rate?," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, issue Q II, pages 5-28.
  8. Benigno, Pierpaolo, 2004. "Optimal monetary policy in a currency area," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 63(2), pages 293-320, July.
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  17. Huang, Kevin X. D. & Liu, Zheng, 2002. "Staggered price-setting, staggered wage-setting, and business cycle persistence," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(2), pages 405-433, March.
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Cited by:
  1. Ahrens, Steffen & Snower, Dennis J., 2012. "Envy, Guilt, and the Phillips Curve," IZA Discussion Papers 6302, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Guido Ascari & Argia M. Sbordone, 2013. "The Macroeconomics of Trend Inflation," DEM Working Papers Series 053, University of Pavia, Department of Economics and Management.

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