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Monetary discretion, pricing complementarity, and dynamic multiple equilibria

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  • Robert G. King
  • Alexander L. Wolman

Abstract

A discretionary policymaker responds to the state of the economy each period. Private agents' current behavior determines the future state based on expectations of future policy. Discretionary policy thus can lead to dynamic complementarity between private agents and a policymaker, which in turn can generate multiple equilibria. Working in a simple new Keynesian model with two-period staggered pricing — in which equilibrium is unique under commitment — we illustrate this interaction: if firms expect a high future money supply, (i) they will set a high current price and (ii) the future monetary authority will accommodate with a higher money supply, so as not to distort relative prices. We show that there are two point-in-time equilibria under discretion and we construct a related stochastic sunspot equilibrium.

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Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond in its series Working Paper with number 04-05.

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Date of creation: 2004
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedrwp:04-05

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Keywords: Monetary policy;

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  1. Richard Clarida & Jordi Galí & Mark Gertler, 1997. "The science of monetary policy: A new Keynesian perspective," Economics Working Papers 356, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Apr 1999.
  2. V. V. Chari & Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum, 1996. "Expectation Traps and Discretion," NBER Working Papers 5541, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Kimball, Miles S, 1995. "The Quantitative Analytics of the Basic Neomonetarist Model," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 27(4), pages 1241-77, November.
  4. Stefania Albanesi & V.V.Chari & Lawrence J. Christiano, 2002. "Expectation traps and monetary policy," Working Paper Series WP-02-04, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  5. Aubhik Khan & Robert King & Alexander L. Wolman, 2002. "Optimal monetary policy," Working Papers 02-19, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
  6. Ennis, Huberto M. & Keister, Todd, 2005. "Government policy and the probability of coordination failures," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 49(4), pages 939-973, May.
  7. Glomm, Gerhard & Ravikumar, B., 1996. "Endogenous public policy and multiple equilibria," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 11(4), pages 653-662, April.
  8. Barro, Robert J & Gordon, David B, 1983. "A Positive Theory of Monetary Policy in a Natural Rate Model," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 91(4), pages 589-610, August.
  9. Jose-Victor Rios-Rull & Per Krusell, 1999. "On the Size of U.S. Government: Political Economy in the Neoclassical Growth Model," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(5), pages 1156-1181, December.
  10. Aubhik Khan & Robert G. King & Alexander L. Wolman, 2001. "The pitfalls of monetary discretion," Working Paper 01-08, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond.
  11. Ireland, Peter N., 1997. "Sustainable monetary policies," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 87-108, November.
  12. 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.
  13. Julio Rotemberg, 1987. "The New Keynesian Microfoundations," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1987, Volume 2, pages 69-116 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. 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.
  15. Robert King & Alexander L. Wolman, 1999. "What Should the Monetary Authority Do When Prices Are Sticky?," NBER Chapters, in: Monetary Policy Rules, pages 349-404 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Cooper, Russell & John, Andrew, 1988. "Coordinating Coordination Failures in Keynesian Models," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 103(3), pages 441-63, August.
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