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Uncertainty at the Zero Lower Bound

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  • Taisuke Nakata

    (Federal Reserve Board)

Abstract

This paper examines how the presence of uncertainty alters allocations and prices when the nominal interest rate is constrained by the zero lower bound. I conduct the analysis using a standard New Keynesian model in which the nominal interest rate is determined according to a truncated Taylor rule. I find that an increase in the variance of shocks to the discount factor process reduces consumption, inflation, and output by a substantially larger amount when the zero lower bound is binding than when it is not. Due to the zero lower bound constraint, policy functions for the real interest rates and the marginal costs of production are highly convex and concave, respectively. As a result, a mean-preserving spread in the shock distribution increases the expectation of future real interest rates and decreases the expectation of future real marginal costs, which lead forward-looking households and firms to reduce consumption and set lower prices today. The more flexible prices are, the larger the effects of uncertainty are at the zero lower bound.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Society for Economic Dynamics in its series 2013 Meeting Papers with number 924.

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Date of creation: 2013
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Handle: RePEc:red:sed013:924

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References

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  1. Jesus Fernandez-Villaverde & Pablo Guerron-Quintana & Keith Kuester & Juan Rubio-Ramirez, 2011. "Fiscal Volatility Shocks and Economic Activity," PIER Working Paper Archive 11-022, Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania.
  2. Christopher Gust & David Lopez-Salido & Matthew E. Smith, 2012. "The empirical implications of the interest-rate lower bound," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2012-83, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  3. Anton Nakov, 2006. "Optimal and Simple Monetary Policy Rules with Zero Floor on the Nominal Interest Rate," Banco de Espa�a Working Papers 0637, Banco de Espa�a.
  4. Jesús Fernández-Villaverde & Grey Gordon & Pablo A. Guerrón-Quintana & Juan Rubio-Ramírez, 2012. "Nonlinear Adventures at the Zero Lower Bound," NBER Working Papers 18058, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Susanto Basu & Brent Bundick, 2011. "Uncertainty Shocks in a Model of Effective Demand," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 774, Boston College Department of Economics, revised 20 Sep 2012.
  6. Roberto M. Billi, 2011. "Optimal Inflation for the US Economy," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 3(3), pages 29-52, July.
  7. Klaus Adam & Roberto M. Billi, 2005. "Optimal monetary policy under commitment with a zero bound on nominal interest rates," Research Working Paper RWP 05-07, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.
  8. Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum & Sergio Rebelo, 2010. "When is the government spending multiplier large?," CQER Working Paper 2010-01, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
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Cited by:
  1. Christopher Gust & David Lopez-Salido & Matthew E. Smith, 2012. "The empirical implications of the interest-rate lower bound," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2012-83, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  2. Alexander W. Richter & Nathaniel A. Throckmorton, 2014. "The Zero Lower Bound: Frequency, Duration, and Numerical Convergence," Auburn Economics Working Paper Series auwp2014-09, Department of Economics, Auburn University.
  3. Taisuke Nakata, 2013. "Optimal fiscal and monetary policy with occasionally binding zero bound constraints," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2013-40, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  4. Susanto Basu & Brent Bundick, 2012. "Uncertainty Shocks in a Model of Effective Demand," NBER Working Papers 18420, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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