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A Monetary Policy Rule for Automatic Prevention of a Liquidity Trap

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  • Bennett T. McCallum

Abstract

In analyses of "liquidity trap" problems associated with the zero lower bound (ZLB) on nominal interest rates, it is important to emphasize the difference between policy rule changes, intended to help escape an existing ZLB situation, and maintained policy rules designed so as to avoid ZLB situations. Analysis assuming that rule changes would lead to a new RE equilibrium immediately seems implausible. Accordingly, the paper focuses on the design of a rule that should retain stabilization effectiveness even if the economy is temporarily shocked into a ZLB situation. The rule considered is one that uses as its instrument variable a weighted average of an interest rate and the rate of depreciation of the nominal exchange rate. With a small weight attached to the depreciation term, it will be nearly irrelevant in normal situations but call for strong adjustments when the ZLB condition prevails. Stabilizing properties of this "MC" rule are studied within a small open economy model developed by McCallum and Nelson. Results indicate that under ZLB conditions the MC rule will provide strong stabilizing policy actions yet, under conditions such that the ZLB constraint is not relevant, the MC rule need not hinder monetary policy.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 11056.

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Date of creation: Jan 2005
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Publication status: published as A Monetary Policy Rule for Automatic Prevention of a Liquidity Trap , Bennett T. McCallum . in Monetary Policy with Very Low Inflation in the Pacific Rim, NBER-EASE, Volume 15 , Ito and Rose. 2006
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:11056

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  1. McCallum, Bennett T, 2000. "Theoretical Analysis Regarding a Zero Lower Bound on Nominal Interest Rates," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 32(4), pages 870-904, November.
  2. Taylor, John B., 1993. "Discretion versus policy rules in practice," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 195-214, December.
  3. Laurence M. Ball, 1999. "Policy Rules for Open Economies," NBER Chapters, in: Monetary Policy Rules, pages 127-156 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Volker Wieland & Gunter Coenen, 2003. "The Zero-Interest-Rate Bound and the Role of the Exchange Rate for Monetary Policy in Japan," Computing in Economics and Finance 2003 138, Society for Computational Economics.
  5. Auerbach, Alan J. & Obstfeld, Maurice, 2004. "The Case for Open-Market Purchases in a Liquidity Trap," Center for International and Development Economics Research, Working Paper Series qt1dn4d9sr, Center for International and Development Economics Research, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
  6. Paul R. Krugman, 1998. "It's Baaack: Japan's Slump and the Return of the Liquidity Trap," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 29(2), pages 137-206.
  7. Gerlach, Stefan & Smets, Frank, 2000. "MCIs and monetary policy," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 44(9), pages 1677-1700, October.
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  21. Robert E. Lucas, Jr., 1980. "Rules, Discretion, and the Role of the Economic Advisor," NBER Chapters, in: Rational Expectations and Economic Policy, pages 199-210 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  23. Coenen, Guenter & Wieland, Volker, 2003. "The Zero-Interest-Rate and the Role of the Exchange Rate for Monetary Policy in Japan," CFS Working Paper Series 2003/09, Center for Financial Studies (CFS).
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Cited by:
  1. Bennett T. McCallum, 2007. "Monetary Policy in East Asia: The Case of Singapore," Monetary and Economic Studies, Institute for Monetary and Economic Studies, Bank of Japan, vol. 25(S1), pages 13-28, December.
  2. Hagedorn, Marcus, 2008. "Nominal and real interest rates during an optimal disinflation in New Keynesian models," Working Paper Series 0878, European Central Bank.
  3. Sebastian Edwards, 2006. "External Imbalances in an Advanced, Commodity-Exporting Country: The Case of New Zealand," NBER Working Papers 12620, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Jacek Krawczyk & Rishab Sethi, 2007. "Satisficing Solutions for New Zealand Monetary Policy," Reserve Bank of New Zealand Discussion Paper Series DP2007/03, Reserve Bank of New Zealand.
  5. Vitor Gaspar & Frank Smets & David Vestin, 2006. "Optimal Monetary Policy under Adaptive Learning," Computing in Economics and Finance 2006 183, Society for Computational Economics.
  6. Teo, Wing Leong, 2009. "Can exchange rate rules be better than interest rate rules?," Japan and the World Economy, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 301-311, August.

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