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The [un]importance of forward-looking behavior in price specifications

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  • Jeffrey C. Fuhrer

Abstract

The seminal work of Phelps, Taylor, and Calvo developed forward-looking models of price determination that imparted inertia to the price level. These models incorporate expectations of future prices and excess demand by imposing constraints (typically lag-lead symmetry constraints) that force future variables to enter the specification. In this paper, I test the empirical significance of future prices in specifications like those of Taylor. I find that expectations of future prices are empirically unimportant in explaining price and inflation behavior. However, the dynamics of a model that includes a purely backward-looking inflation specification differ significantly-and not altogether pleasingly-from those with a forward-looking specification.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Boston in its series Working Papers with number 95-6.

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Date of creation: 1995
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Publication status: Published in Journal of Money, Credit and Banking 29, no. 3 (August 1997): 338-50.
Handle: RePEc:fip:fedbwp:95-6

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Keywords: Prices;

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  1. Bernanke, Ben S & Blinder, Alan S, 1992. "The Federal Funds Rate and the Channels of Monetary Transmission," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(4), pages 901-21, September.
  2. Jeff Fuhrer & George Moore, 1989. "Monetary policy rules and the indicator properties of asset prices," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 89, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  3. Laurence Ball, 1993. "What Determines the Sacrifice Ratio?," NBER Working Papers 4306, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Jeff Fuhrer & George Moore, 1993. "Inflation persistence," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 93-17, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  5. Bankim Chadha & Paul R. Masson & Guy Meredith, 1992. "Models of Inflation and the Costs of Disinflation," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 39(2), pages 395-431, June.
  6. Edmund Phelps, 1978. "Disinflation without recession: Adaptive guideposts and monetary policy," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer, vol. 114(4), pages 783-809, December.
  7. Brayton, Flint & Mauskopf, Eileen, 1985. "The federal reserve board MPS quarterly econometric model of the US economy," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 2(3), pages 170-292, July.
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