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Rational Inattention, Multi-Product Firms and the Neutrality of Money

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  • Ernesto Pastén

Abstract

I augment the rational inattention model of price-setting (in which firms have a limited capacity to process information) to allow firms to produce multiple goods. My main contribution is to highlight the economies of scale in the use of information that arise in this context, which firms exploit by acquiring information of aggregate variables: Aggregate information is useful for pricing all goods; idiosyncratic information is only useful for pricing goods it is concerned with. The model quantitatively predicts average price changes consistent with the data for the U.S., low costs for firms due to the friction, and comovement of prices inside firms. Importantly, the economies of scale in the use of information cut by four the capacity of the model to deliver money non-neutrality when firms produce two goods instead of one. Money becomes almost neutral when firms produce five goods or more.

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Paper provided by Central Bank of Chile in its series Working Papers Central Bank of Chile with number 664.

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Date of creation: Feb 2012
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Handle: RePEc:chb:bcchwp:664

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  15. Mirko Wiederholt & Bartosz Mackowiak, 2005. "Optimal Sticky Prices under Rational Inattention," 2005 Meeting Papers 369, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  16. Luigi Paciello & Mirko Wiederholt, 2011. "Exogenous Information, Endogenous Information and Optimal Monetary Policy," EIEF Working Papers Series 1104, Einaudi Institute for Economics and Finance (EIEF), revised Jan 2011.
  17. Elias Albagli & Christian Hellwig & Aleh Tsyvinski, 2011. "A Theory of Asset Pricing Based on Heterogeneous Information," NBER Working Papers 17548, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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Cited by:
  1. Fernando Alvarez & Francesco Lippi, 2013. "Price setting with menu cost for multi-product firms," EIEF Working Papers Series 1302, Einaudi Institute for Economics and Finance (EIEF), revised Feb 2013.
  2. Luo, Yulei & Young, Eric, 2013. "Rational Inattention in Macroeconomics: A Survey," MPRA Paper 54267, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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