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Caution or Activism? Monetary Policy Strategies in an Open Economy

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  • Ellison, Martin
  • Sarno, Lucio
  • Vilmunen, Jouko

Abstract

We examine optimal policy in a two-country model with uncertainty and learning, where monetary policy actions affect the real economy through the real exchange rate channel. Our results show that whether policy should be cautious or activist depends on the size of one country relative to another. If one country is small relative to the other then activism is optimal. In contrast, if the two countries are equal sized then caution prevails. Caution is induced in the latter case because of the interaction between the home and foreign central banks. In a two-country symmetric equilibrium, learning is shown to be detrimental to welfare, implying that optimal policy is cautious.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 4766.

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Date of creation: Nov 2004
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:4766

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Keywords: learning; monetary policy; open economy;

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References

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  1. Basar, T & Salmon, Mark, 1989. "Credibility and the Value of Information Transmission in a Model of Monetary Policy and Inflation," CEPR Discussion Papers 338, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Bertocchi, Graziella & Spagat, Michael, 1991. "Learning, Experimentation and Monetary Policy," Discussion Papers (IRES - Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales) 1991018, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES).
  3. Balvers, Ronald J & Cosimano, Thomas F, 1994. "Inflation Variability and Gradualist Monetary Policy," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(4), pages 721-38, October.
  4. Wieland, Volker, 2000. "Learning by doing and the value of optimal experimentation," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 24(4), pages 501-534, April.
  5. Volker Wieland, 1999. "Monetary policy, parameter uncertainty and optimal learning," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 1999-48, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  6. Svensson, Lars E O, 1999. "Price-Level Targeting versus Inflation Targeting: A Free Lunch?," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 31(3), pages 277-95, August.
  7. Alan S. Blinder, 1999. "Central Banking in Theory and Practice," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262522608, December.
  8. Ellison, Martin & Vilmunen, Jouko, 2005. "A simple approach to identifying the incentives for policy experimentation," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 86(2), pages 167-172, February.
  9. Ghosh, Atish R & Masson, Paul R, 1991. "Model Uncertainty, Learning, and the Gains from Coordination," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(3), pages 465-79, June.
  10. Kiefer, Nicholas M & Nyarko, Yaw, 1989. "Optimal Control of an Unknown Linear Process with Learning," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 30(3), pages 571-86, August.
  11. Carl E. Walsh, 2003. "Monetary Theory and Policy, 2nd Edition," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 2, volume 1, number 0262232316, December.
  12. Frankel, Jeffrey A & Rockett, Katharine E, 1988. "International Macroeconomic Policy Coordination When Policymakers Do Not Agree on the True Model," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(3), pages 318-40, June.
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Cited by:
  1. James Bullard & Eric Schaling, 2005. "Monetary Policy, Determinacy, and Learnability in the Open Economy," Working Papers 11, Economic Research Southern Africa.
  2. Philip Arestis & Alexander Mihailov, 2008. "Classifying Monetary Economics: Fields and Methods from Past to Future," Economics & Management Discussion Papers em-dp2008-64, Henley Business School, Reading University.
  3. James Bullard & Eric Schaling, 2009. "Monetary Policy, Determinacy, and Learnability in a Two-Block World Economy," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 41(8), pages 1585-1612, December.
  4. Bigio, Saki, 2010. "Learning under fear of floating," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 34(10), pages 1923-1950, October.

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