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Reaching One-Digit Inflation: The Chilean Experience

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  • Vittorio Corbo

    () (Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile)

Abstract

The main purpose of this paper is to analyze the process by which Chile was able to reduce inflation during the 1990s. In this period inflation was gradually reduced from close to 30% per annum in 1990 to only 6% in 1997. The paper concludes that three factors were important in helping to accomplish this performance. First, the independent Central Bank and its tough actions early on -to convey the message that it was ready to stand behind its mandate (to reduce inflation)- helped to shape inflationary expectations and in the process it led to lower wage inflation and ultimately a lower path for core inflation. Second, a restrictive monetary policy, and the foreign exchange intervention policies associated with it, resulted in a trajectory of the nominal exchange rate much below what would have been observed under a PPP rule adjusted for differences in productivity. This result was reinforced by the low credibility of the band reflected in the effect of the location of the exchange rate within the band on the observed rate. Third, the higher rate of growth of labor productivity, given the wage equation, resulted in a lower rate of growth of unit labor cost than otherwise. From these three effects the first effect, the enhanced credibility of the new policy operating through the formation of inflation expectations, was found to be the most important factor behind the success in reducing inflation rate.

Suggested Citation

  • Vittorio Corbo, 1998. "Reaching One-Digit Inflation: The Chilean Experience," Journal of Applied Economics, Universidad del CEMA, vol. 1, pages 123-163, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:cem:jaecon:v:1:y:1998:n:1:p:123-163
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Luis F. Céspedes & Claudio Soto, 2007. "Credibility and Inflation Targeting in Chile," Central Banking, Analysis, and Economic Policies Book Series,in: Frederic S. Miskin & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel & Norman Loayza (Series Editor) & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel (Se (ed.), Monetary Policy under Inflation Targeting, edition 1, volume 11, chapter 14, pages 547-578 Central Bank of Chile.
    2. Ghrissi Mhamdi & Mounir Smida & Ramzi Farhani, 2014. "Indicators of core inflation: Case of Tunisia," Post-Print halshs-01138432, HAL.
    3. Laurence Ball & Robert Moffitt, 2001. "Productivity Growth and the Phillips Curve," NBER Working Papers 8421, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Sebastian Edwards, 2006. "The Relationship Between Exchange Rates and Inflation Targeting Revisited," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 409, Central Bank of Chile.
    5. Frederic S. Miskin & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel, 2007. "Does Inflation Targeting Make a Difference?," Central Banking, Analysis, and Economic Policies Book Series,in: Frederic S. Miskin & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel & Norman Loayza (Series Editor) & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel (Se (ed.), Monetary Policy under Inflation Targeting, edition 1, volume 11, chapter 9, pages 291-372 Central Bank of Chile.
    6. Luis Felipe Céspedes & Ilan Goldfajn & Phil Lowe & Rodrigo O. Valdés, 2006. "Policy Responses to External Shocks: The Experiences of Australia, Brazil, and Chile," Central Banking, Analysis, and Economic Policies Book Series,in: Ricardo Caballero & César Calderón & Luis Felipe Céspedes & Norman Loayza (Series Editor) & Klaus Sc (ed.), External Vulnerability and Preventive Policies, edition 1, volume 10, chapter 5, pages 109-170 Central Bank of Chile.
    7. Alberto Naudon & Joaquín Vial, 2016. "The evolution of inflation in Chile since 2000," BIS Papers chapters,in: Bank for International Settlements (ed.), Inflation mechanisms, expectations and monetary policy, volume 89, pages 93-116 Bank for International Settlements.
    8. Javier García-Cicco & Enrique Kawamura, 2014. "Central Bank Liquidity Management and “Unconventional” Monetary Policies," ECONOMIA JOURNAL, THE LATIN AMERICAN AND CARIBBEAN ECONOMIC ASSOCIATION - LACEA, vol. 0(Fall 2014), pages 39-87, June.
    9. Felipe Morandé, 2002. "A Decade of Inflation Targeting in Chile: Developments, Lessons, and Challenges," Central Banking, Analysis, and Economic Policies Book Series,in: Norman Loayza & Raimundo Soto & Norman Loayza (Series Editor) & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel (Series Editor) (ed.), Inflation Targeting: Desing, Performance, Challenges, edition 1, volume 5, chapter 14, pages 583-626 Central Bank of Chile.
    10. Mishkin, Frederic S. & Savastano, Miguel A., 2001. "Monetary policy strategies for Latin America," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(2), pages 415-444, December.
    11. Andrés Elberg & Vittorio Corbo & José Tessada, 1999. "Monetary Policy in Latin America: Underpinnings and Procedures," Latin American Journal of Economics-formerly Cuadernos de Economía, Instituto de Economía. Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile., vol. 36(109), pages 897-927.
    12. Vittorio Corbo & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel, 2001. "Inflation Targeting in Latin America," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 105, Central Bank of Chile.
    13. Luis Felipe Céspedes C. & Ilan Goldfajn & Phil Lowe & Rodrigo Valdés P., 2005. "Policy Responses to external Shocks in Australia, Brazil and Chile," Journal Economía Chilena (The Chilean Economy), Central Bank of Chile, vol. 8(2), pages 7-44, August.
    14. Michael Bordo & Pierre Siklos, 2014. "Central Bank Credibility, Reputation and Inflation Targeting in Historical Perspective," NBER Working Papers 20693, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    15. Vittorio Corbo, 2002. "Monetary Policy in Latin America in the 90s," Central Banking, Analysis, and Economic Policies Book Series,in: Norman Loayza & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel & Norman Loayza (Series Editor) & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel (Series (ed.), Monetary Policy: Rules and Transmission Mechanisms, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 6, pages 117-166 Central Bank of Chile.
    16. Rodrigo Valdés, 2007. "Inflation Targeting in Chile: Experience and Selected Issues," Economic Policy Papers Central Bank of Chile 22, Central Bank of Chile.
    17. Luis F. Céspedes & Claudio Soto, 2005. "Credibility and Inflation Targeting in an Emerging Market: The Case of Chile," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 312, Central Bank of Chile.
    18. Sebastián Edwards, 2007. "The Relationship between Exchange Rates and Inflation Targeting Revisited," Central Banking, Analysis, and Economic Policies Book Series,in: Frederic S. Miskin & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel & Norman Loayza (Series Editor) & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel (Se (ed.), Monetary Policy under Inflation Targeting, edition 1, volume 11, chapter 10, pages 373-413 Central Bank of Chile.
    19. Luis F. Céspedes C. & Claudio Soto G., 2006. "Inflation Targeting And Monetary Policy Credibility In Chile," Journal Economía Chilena (The Chilean Economy), Central Bank of Chile, vol. 9(3), pages 53-70, December.
    20. Ivan Mendieta Muñoz, 2013. "El modelo de objetivos de inflación y el efecto pass-through en América Latina," Revista de Economía Crítica, Asociación de Economía Crítica, vol. 15, pages 5-30.

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