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Signaling in a Global Game: Coordination and Policy Traps

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  • George-Marios Angeletos
  • Christian Hellwig
  • Alessandro Pavan

Abstract

This paper examines the ability of a policy maker to control equilibrium outcomes in a global coordination game; applications include currency attacks, bank runs, and debt crises. A unique equilibrium is known to survive when the policy is exogenously fixed. We show that, by conveying information, endogenous policy re-introduces multiple equilibria. Multiplicity obtains even in environments where the policy is observed with idiosyncratic noise. It is sustained by the agents coordinating on different interpretations of, and different reactions to, the same policy choices. The policy maker is thus trapped into a position where both the optimal policy and the coordination outcome are dictated by self-fulfilling market expectations.

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Paper provided by Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science in its series Discussion Papers with number 1400.

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Date of creation: Nov 2005
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Handle: RePEc:nwu:cmsems:1400

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Web page: http://www.kellogg.northwestern.edu/research/math/
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Keywords: global games; complementarities; signaling; self-fulfilling expectations; multiple equilibria; currency crises; regime change.;

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  1. Harold L. Cole & Timothy J. Kehoe, 1998. "Self-Fulfilling Debt Crises," Levine's Working Paper Archive 114, David K. Levine.
  2. Drazen, Allan, 2000. "Interest-rate and borrowing defense against speculative attack," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 53(1), pages 303-348, December.
  3. 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.
  4. Diamond, Douglas W & Dybvig, Philip H, 1983. "Bank Runs, Deposit Insurance, and Liquidity," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 91(3), pages 401-19, June.
  5. Katz, Michael L & Shapiro, Carl, 1986. "Technology Adoption in the Presence of Network Externalities," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(4), pages 822-41, August.
  6. Maurice Obstfeld, 1995. "Models of Currency Crises with Self-Fulfilling Features," NBER Working Papers 5285, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Hans Carlsson & Eric van Damme, 1993. "Global Games and Equilibrium Selection," Levine's Working Paper Archive 122247000000001088, David K. Levine.
  8. V.V. Chari & Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum, 1996. "Expectations, traps and discretion," Working Papers in Applied Economic Theory 96-04, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  9. Marco Battaglini & Roland Bénabou, 2003. "Trust, Coordination, and the Industrial Organization of Political Activism," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 1(4), pages 851-889, 06.
  10. Giancarlo Corsetti & Bernardo Guimaraes & Nouriel Roubini, 2003. "International Lending of Last Resort and Moral Hazard: A Model of IMF's Catalytic Finance," NBER Working Papers 10125, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. George-Marios Angeletos & Christian Hellwig & Alessandro Pavan, 2003. "Coordination and Policy Traps," NBER Working Papers 9767, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Jean-Charles Rochet & Xavier Vives, 2004. "Coordination Failures and the Lender of Last Resort: Was Bagehot Right After All?," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 2(6), pages 1116-1147, December.
  13. Stefania Albanesi & V. V. Chari & Lawrence J. Christiano, 2003. "Expectation Traps and Monetary Policy," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 70(4), pages 715-741, October.
  14. Obstfeld, Maurice, 1986. "Rational and Self-fulfilling Balance-of-Payments Crises," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(1), pages 72-81, March.
  15. Morris, Stephen & Shin, Hyun Song, 1997. "Unique Equilibrium in a Model of Self-fulfilling Currency Attacks," CEPR Discussion Papers 1687, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  16. Corsetti, Giancarlo & Guimarães, Bernardo & Roubini, Nouriel, 2004. "International Lending of Last Resort and Moral Hazard: A Model of the IMF's Catalytic Finance," CEPR Discussion Papers 4383, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  17. Stephen Morris & Hyun Song Shin, 2000. "Rethinking Multiple Equilibria in Macroeconomic Modelling," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1260, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  18. Stephen Morris & Hyun Song Shin, 2000. "Global Games: Theory and Applications," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1275R, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University, revised Aug 2001.
  19. Kenneth Rogoff & Anne Sibert, 1986. "Elections and Macroeconomic Policy Cycles," NBER Working Papers 1838, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Monderer, Dov & Samet, Dov, 1989. "Approximating common knowledge with common beliefs," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 1(2), pages 170-190, June.
  21. Christophe Chamley, 1999. "Coordinating Regime Switches," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 114(3), pages 869-905, August.
  22. Hellwig, Christian, 2002. "Public Information, Private Information, and the Multiplicity of Equilibria in Coordination Games," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 107(2), pages 191-222, December.
  23. Calvo, Guillermo A, 1988. "Servicing the Public Debt: The Role of Expectations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(4), pages 647-61, September.
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