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Reverse Kalman filtering U.S. inflation with sticky professional forecasts

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  • James M. Nason
  • Gregor W. Smith

Abstract

We provide a new way to filter US inflation into trend and cycle components, based on extracting long-run forecasts from the Survey of Professional Forecasters. We operate the Kalman filter in reverse, beginning with observed forecasts, then estimating parameters, and then extracting the stochastic trend in inflation. The trend-cycle model with unobserved components is consistent with numerous studies of US inflation history and is of interest partly because the trend may be viewed as the Fed’s evolving inflation target or long-horizon expected inflation. The sluggish reporting attributed to forecasters is consistent with evidence on mean forecast errors. We find considerable evidence of inflation-gap persistence and some evidence of implicit sticky information. But statistical tests show we cannot reconcile these two widely used perspectives on US inflation forecasts, the unobserved-components model and the sticky-information model.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia in its series Working Papers with number 13-34.

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Date of creation: 2013
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedpwp:13-34

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Keywords: Inflation (Finance) - United States ; Forecasting;

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References

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  1. Timothy Cogley & Thomas J. Sargent, 2003. "Drifts and volatilities: monetary policies and outcomes in the post WWII U.S," Working Paper 2003-25, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
  2. Hashmat Khan & Zhenhua Zhu, 2002. "Estimates of the Sticky-Information Phillips Curve for the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom," Working Papers 02-19, Bank of Canada.
  3. Yuriy Gorodnichenko & Olivier Coibion, 2010. "What can survey forecasts tell us about informational rigidities?," 2010 Meeting Papers 277, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  4. Spencer D. Krane, 2011. "Professional Forecasters' View of Permanent and Transitory Shocks to GDP," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 3(1), pages 184-211, January.
  5. Michael B. Devereux & James Yetman, 2001. "Predetermined Prices and the Persistent Effects of Money on Output," Working Papers 01-13, Bank of Canada.
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  8. Todd E. Clark & Troy Davig, 2009. "Decomposing the declining volatility of long-term inflation expectations," Research Working Paper RWP 09-05, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.
  9. Ricardo Reis, 2005. "Inattentive Producers," 2005 Meeting Papers 290, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  10. Olivier Coibion & Yuriy Gorodnichenko, 2010. "Information Rigidity and the Expectations Formation Process: A Simple Framework and New Facts," NBER Working Papers 16537, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  13. Olivier Coibion, 2010. "Testing the Sticky Information Phillips Curve," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 92(1), pages 87-101, February.
  14. Christopher D. Carroll, 2003. "Macroeconomic Expectations Of Households And Professional Forecasters," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 118(1), pages 269-298, February.
  15. Michael Kiley, 2005. "A Quantitative Comparison Of Sticky-Price And Sticky-Information Models Of Price Setting," Computing in Economics and Finance 2005 183, Society for Computational Economics.
  16. Keane, Michael P & Runkle, David E, 1990. "Testing the Rationality of Price Forecasts: New Evidence from Panel Data," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(4), pages 714-35, September.
  17. Patton, Andrew J. & Timmermann, Allan, 2010. "Why do forecasters disagree? Lessons from the term structure of cross-sectional dispersion," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(7), pages 803-820, October.
  18. Carlos Capistrán & Allan Timmermann, 2008. "Disagreement and Biases in Inflation Expectations," CREATES Research Papers 2008-56, School of Economics and Management, University of Aarhus.
  19. N. Gregory Mankiw & Ricardo Reis, 2001. "Sticky Information Versus Sticky Prices: A Proposal to Replace the New Keynesian Phillips Curve," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1922, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  20. Khan, Hashmat & Zhu, Zhenhua, 2006. "Estimates of the Sticky-Information Phillips Curve for the United States," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 38(1), pages 195-207, February.
  21. Elmar Mertens, 2011. "Measuring the level and uncertainty of trend inflation," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2011-42, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
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