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The Relationship between Real Interest Rates and Inflation

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Abstract

In the recent decade, a huge amount of papers, describing monetary policy rules based on nominal interest rates, has been written. As it is, however, well known, it is in fact the real and not the nominal interest rate, that can influence spending decisions of enterprises and households and thus inflation. One way, to describe the relationship between real interest rates and inflation, is based on our experience with the monetary theory of the price level. The quantity theory of money can be used under certain assumptions as a good description of the long-run relationship between money and prices. In this respect the best known empirical application is probably the P-star model of Hallman, Porter and Small (1991). In this paper we use two simple descriptions of the long run link between real interest rates and inflation, and subsequently test their empirical performance, using similar techniques as employed in P-star modeling. In an empirical study, based on cointegration analysis, we show that the gap between the real and natural rate of interest does not determine inflation, as it is often postulated, but its growth rate. We find that this relationship describes reasonably well the long run influence of the interest rate gap on inflation. Simultaneously we calculate the average natural rate of interest.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bank of Poland, Economic Institute in its series National Bank of Poland Working Papers with number 23.

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Length: 26
Date of creation: 2002
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:nbp:nbpmis:23

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Keywords: Inflation; Natural Rate of Interest;

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References

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  1. Olivier Jean Blanchard & Danny Quah, 1988. "The Dynamic Effects of Aggregate Demand and Supply Disturbances," NBER Working Papers 2737, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Andrew G Haldane & Vicky Read, 2000. "Monetary policy surprises and the yield curve," Bank of England working papers 106, Bank of England.
  3. Robert King & Mark W. Watson, 1992. "Testing Long Run Neutrality," NBER Working Papers 4156, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Katharine S. Neiss and Edward Nelson, 2001. "The Real Interest Rate Gap as an Inflation Indicator," Computing in Economics and Finance 2001 145, Society for Computational Economics.
  5. James Bullard, 1999. "Testing long-run monetary neutrality propositions: lessons from the recent research," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Nov, pages 57-77.
  6. Benjamin M. Friedman, 1999. "The Future of Monetary Policy: The Central Bank as an Army With Only a Signal Corps," NBER Working Papers 7420, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. William Kerr & Robert G. King, 1996. "Limits on interest rate rules in the IS model," Economic Quarterly, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, issue Spr, pages 47-75.
  8. Julio J. Rotemberg & Michael Woodford, 1998. "Interest-Rate Rules in an Estimated Sticky Price Model," NBER Working Papers 6618, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Wicksell, Knut, 1907. "The Influence of the Rate of Interest on Prices," History of Economic Thought Articles, McMaster University Archive for the History of Economic Thought, vol. 17, pages 213-220.
  10. Alain Ize & Arto Kovanen & Timo Henckel, 1999. "Central Banking without Central Bank Money," IMF Working Papers 99/92, International Monetary Fund.
  11. Osterwald-Lenum, Michael, 1992. "A Note with Quantiles of the Asymptotic Distribution of the Maximum Likelihood Cointegration Rank Test Statistics," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 54(3), pages 461-72, August.
  12. Friedman, Benjamin M, 1999. "The Future of Monetary Policy: The Central Bank as an Army with Only a Signal Corps?," International Finance, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 2(3), pages 321-38, November.
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Cited by:
  1. Michal Brzoza-Brzezina, 2003. "Estimating the Natural Rate of Interest: A SVAR Approach," Macroeconomics 0301008, EconWPA.
  2. Jakub Borowski & Michal Brzoza- Brzezina & Piotr Szpunar, 2003. "Exchange Rate Regimes and Poland's Participation in ERM II," Macroeconomics 0302002, EconWPA.

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