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Imperfect Credibility and Robust Monetary Policy

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  • Richard Dennis

Abstract

This paper studies the behavior of a central bank that seeks to conduct policy optimally while having imperfect credibility and harboring doubts about its model. Taking the Smets-Wouters model as the central bank’s approximating model, the paper’s main findings are as follows. First, a central bank’s credibility can have large consequences for how policy responds to shocks. Second, central banks that have low credibility can benefit from a desire for robustness because this desire motivates the central bank to follow through on policy announcements that would otherwise not be time-consistent. Third, even relatively small departures from perfect credibility can produce important declines in policy performance. Finally, as a technical contribution, the paper develops a numerical procedure to solve the decision-problem facing an imperfectly credible policymaker that seeks robustness.

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File URL: http://cama.crawford.anu.edu.au/pdf/working-papers/2012/412012.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University in its series CAMA Working Papers with number 2012-41.

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Length: 35 pages
Date of creation: Aug 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:een:camaaa:2012-41

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Keywords: Imperfect credibility; Robust policymaking; Time-consistency;

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References

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  1. Kasa, Kenneth, 2002. "Model Uncertainty, Robust Policies, And The Value Of Commitment," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 6(01), pages 145-166, February.
  2. Miles S. Kimball & Michael Woodford, 1994. "The quantitative analysis of the basic neomonetarist model," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, pages 1241-1289.
  3. Richard Dennis & Ulf Soderstrom, 2002. "How important is precommitment for monetary policy?," Working Paper Series 2002-10, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  4. Davide Debortoli & Ricardo Nunes, 2007. "Loose commitment," International Finance Discussion Papers 916, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  5. Hansen, Lars Peter & Sargent, Thomas J., 2012. "Three types of ambiguity," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(5), pages 422-445.
  6. Richard Dennis & Kai Leitemo & Ulf Söderström, 2006. "Methods for robust control," Working Paper Series 2006-10, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  7. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1977. "Rules Rather Than Discretion: The Inconsistency of Optimal Plans," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 473-91, June.
  8. Ernst Schaumburg & Andrea Tambalotti, 2003. "An Investigation of the Gains from Commitment in Monetary Policy," Macroeconomics 0302004, EconWPA.
  9. Thomas J. Sargent & Riccardo Colacito & Lars P. Hansen & Timothy Cogley, 2008. "Robustness and US Monetary," 2008 Meeting Papers 228, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  10. Dennis, Richard, 2010. "How robustness can lower the cost of discretion," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(6), pages 653-667, September.
  11. Currie,David & Levine,Paul, 1993. "Rules, Reputation and Macroeconomic Policy Coordination," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521441964, October.
  12. Hansen, Lars Peter & Sargent, Thomas J. & Wang, Neng E., 2002. "Robust Permanent Income And Pricing With Filtering," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 6(01), pages 40-84, February.
  13. Giordani, Paolo & Soderlind, Paul, 2004. "Solution of macromodels with Hansen-Sargent robust policies: some extensions," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 28(12), pages 2367-2397, December.
  14. Epstein, Larry G & Zin, Stanley E, 1989. "Substitution, Risk Aversion, and the Temporal Behavior of Consumption and Asset Returns: A Theoretical Framework," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(4), pages 937-69, July.
  15. Martin Bodenstein & James Hebden & Ricardo Nunes, 2010. "Imperfect credibility and the zero lower bound on the nominal interest rate," International Finance Discussion Papers 1001, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  16. Gilles Oudiz & Jeffrey Sachs, 1985. "International Policy Coordination In Dynamic Macroeconomic Models," NBER Chapters, in: International Economic Policy Coordination, pages 274-330 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Gilboa, Itzhak & Schmeidler, David, 1989. "Maxmin expected utility with non-unique prior," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 141-153, April.
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