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Sticky price models of the business cycle: can the contract multiplier solve the persistence problem?

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  • V. V. Chari
  • Patrick J. Kehoe
  • Ellen R. McGrattan

Abstract

We construct a quantitative equilibrium model with price setting and use it to ask whether with staggered price setting monetary shocks can generate business cycle fluctuations. These fluctuations include persistent output fluctuations along with the other defining features of business cycles, like volatile investment and smooth consumption. We assume that prices are exogenously sticky for a short period of time. Persistent output fluctuations require endogenous price stickiness in the sense that firms choose not to change prices very much when they can do so. We find that for a wide range of parameter values the amount of endogenous stickiness is small. As a result, we find that in a standard quantitative business cycle model staggered price setting, by itself, does not generate business cycle fluctuations.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis in its series Staff Report with number 217.

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Date of creation: 1998
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Publication status: Published in Econometrica (Vol. 68, No. 5, September 2000, pp. 1151-79)
Handle: RePEc:fip:fedmsr:217

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Keywords: Business cycles ; Multiplier (Economics) ; Price regulation;

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  1. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1972. "Expectations and the neutrality of money," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 4(2), pages 103-124, April.
  2. West, Kenneth D, 1988. "On the Interpretation of Near Random-walk Behavior in GNP," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(1), pages 202-09, March.
  3. Taylor, John B, 1980. "Aggregate Dynamics and Staggered Contracts," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 88(1), pages 1-23, February.
  4. Susanto Basu, 1994. "Intermediate Goods and Business Cycles: Implications for Productivity and Welfare," NBER Working Papers 4817, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Robert G. King & Mark W. Watson, 1995. "Money, prices, interest rates and the business cycle," Working Paper Series, Macroeconomic Issues 95-10, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  6. Yun, Tack, 1996. "Nominal price rigidity, money supply endogeneity, and business cycles," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 37(2-3), pages 345-370, April.
  7. Ball, Laurence & Romer, David, 1989. "Are Prices Too Sticky?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 104(3), pages 507-24, August.
  8. Chari, V V & Christiano, Lawrence J & Kehoe, Patrick J, 1994. "Optimal Fiscal Policy in a Business Cycle Model," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(4), pages 617-52, August.
  9. Ellen R. McGrattan, 1993. "Solving the stochastic growth model with a finite element method," Staff Report 164, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  10. Cho, J.O. & Cooley, T.F., 1991. "The Business Cycle with Nominal Contracts," RCER Working Papers 260, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
  11. Miles S. Kimball & Michael Woodford, 1994. "The quantitative analysis of the basic neomonetarist model," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, pages 1241-1289.
  12. Olivier J. Blanchard, 1982. "Price Asynchronization and Price Level Inertia," NBER Working Papers 0900, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Michael Woodford, 1996. "Control of the Public Debt: A Requirement for Price Stability?," NBER Working Papers 5684, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Robert E. Lucas, Jr. & Michael Woodford, 1993. "Real Effects of Monetary Shocks in an Economy with Sequential Purchases," NBER Working Papers 4250, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Phelps, Edmund S & Taylor, John B, 1977. "Stabilizing Powers of Monetary Policy under Rational Expectations," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(1), pages 163-90, February.
  16. Lee E. Ohanian & Alan C. Stockman, 1994. "Short-run effects on money when some prices are sticky," Economic Quarterly, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, issue Sum, pages 1-24.
  17. Rotemberg, Julio J., 1996. "Prices, output, and hours: An empirical analysis based on a sticky price model," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 37(3), pages 505-533, June.
  18. Blanchard, Olivier Jean & Kiyotaki, Nobuhiro, 1987. "Monopolistic Competition and the Effects of Aggregate Demand," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(4), pages 647-66, September.
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  1. Quantitative Macroeconomics and Real Business Cycles (QM&RBC)
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