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Monetary policy and natural disasters in a DSGE model: how should the Fed have responded to Hurricane Katrina?

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  • Benjamin D. Keen
  • Michael R. Pakko

Abstract

In the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, speculation arose that the Federal Reserve might respond by easing monetary policy. This paper uses a dynamic stochastic general equilibrium (DSGE) model to investigate the appropriate monetary policy response to a natural disaster. We show that the standard Taylor (1993) rule response in models with and without nominal rigidities is to increase the nominal interest rate. That finding is unchanged when we consider the optimal policy response to a disaster. A nominal interest rate increase following a disaster mitigates both temporary inflation effects and output distortions that are attributable to nominal rigidities.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis in its series Working Papers with number 2007-025.

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Date of creation: 2007
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedlwp:2007-025

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Keywords: Monetary policy - United States ; Natural disasters - Economic aspects;

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  1. Dixit, Avinash K & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1977. "Monopolistic Competition and Optimum Product Diversity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 67(3), pages 297-308, June.
  2. Christopher J. Erceg & Dale W. Henderson & Andrew T. Levin, 1999. "Optimal monetary policy with staggered wage and price contracts," International Finance Discussion Papers 640, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  3. King, Robert G & Watson, Mark W, 2002. "System Reduction and Solution Algorithms for Singular Linear Difference Systems under Rational Expectations," Computational Economics, Society for Computational Economics, vol. 20(1-2), pages 57-86, October.
  4. Pakko Michael R., 2005. "Changing Technology Trends, Transition Dynamics, and Growth Accounting," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 5(1), pages 1-42, December.
  5. Christopher J. Neely, 2004. "The Federal Reserve responds to crises: September 11th was not the first," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Mar, pages 27-42.
  6. Hayashi, Fumio, 1982. "Tobin's Marginal q and Average q: A Neoclassical Interpretation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(1), pages 213-24, January.
  7. Frank Smets & Raf Wouters, 2003. "An Estimated Dynamic Stochastic General Equilibrium Model of the Euro Area," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 1(5), pages 1123-1175, 09.
  8. William T. Gavin & Benjamin D. Keen & Michael R. Pakko, 2007. "Inflation risk and optimal monetary policy," Working Papers 2006-035, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
  9. V. V. Chari & Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum, 1996. "Expectation Traps and Discretion," NBER Working Papers 5541, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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Cited by:
  1. Eduardo Cavallo & Ilan Noy, 2009. "The Economics of Natural Disasters - A Survey," Working Papers 200919, University of Hawaii at Manoa, Department of Economics.
  2. Eduardo Cavallo & Ilan Noy, 2010. "The Aftermath of Natural Disasters: Beyond Destruction," CESifo Forum, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 11(2), pages 25-35, 07.
  3. Mitsuhiro Okano, 2013. "Monetary Policy and Natural Disasters: An Extension and Simulation Analysis in the Framework of New Keynesian Macroeconomic Model," APIR Discussion Paper Series 32, Asia Pacific Institute of Research.

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