IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

The Canadian Experience with Targets for Inflation Control

  • Gordon G. Thiessen
Registered author(s):

    This article reflects on Canada's experience with inflation targeting in the 1990s. The discussion opens with a synopsis of the evolution of inflation targets against a backdrop of other monetary policy approaches. The author then proceeds to outline the main advantages of explicit inflation targets - advantages that go beyond the well-known benefits of low inflation. Increased transparency and accountability, and an improvement in the Bank's internal decision making, are highlighted in particular. It is also argued that inflation targets provide a useful mechanism for dealing with demand and supply shocks in a way that reduces disruptive fluctuations. The major criticisms of targeting low rates of inflation (related to wage rigidity, a zero floor on nominal interest rates, and concerns about deflation) are also examined. Although it is too early for definitive conclusions, the author's view is that inflation targets lead to better policy decisions, better economic performance over time, and greater accountability for autonomous central banks.

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: only available to JSTOR subscribers

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

    Article provided by University of Toronto Press in its journal Canadian Public Policy.

    Volume (Year): 24 (1998)
    Issue (Month): 4 (December)
    Pages: 415-428

    in new window

    Handle: RePEc:cpp:issued:v:24:y:1998:i:4:p:415-428
    Contact details of provider: Postal: University of Toronto Press Journals Division 5201 Dufferin Street Toronto, Ontario, Canada M3H 5T8
    Web page:

    Order Information: Web: Email:

    References listed on IDEAS
    Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

    as in new window
    1. Ben S. Bernanke & Frederic S. Mishkin, 1997. "Inflation Targeting: A New Framework for Monetary Policy?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 11(2), pages 97-116, Spring.
    2. Miguel A. Savastano & Paul R. Masson & Sunil Sharma, 1997. "The Scope for Inflation Targeting in Developing Countries," IMF Working Papers 97/130, International Monetary Fund.
    3. George A. Akerlof & William R. Dickens & George L. Perry, 1996. "The Macroeconomics of Low Inflation," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 27(1), pages 1-76.
    4. Frederic S. Mishkin & Adam S. Posen, 1997. "Inflation targeting: lessons from four countries," Economic Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, issue Aug, pages 9-110.
    5. Charles Freedman & Tiff Macklem, 1998. "A Comment on "The Great Canadian Slump"," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 31(3), pages 646-665, August.
    6. Gordon Thiessen, 1995. "Uncertainty and the transmission of monetary policy in Canada (HERMES-Glendon Lecture) [speech]," Bank of Canada Review, Bank of Canada, vol. 1995(Summer), pages 41-58.
    7. Summers, Lawrence, 1991. "How Should Long-Term Monetary Policy Be Determined? Panel Discussion," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 23(3), pages 625-31, August.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cpp:issued:v:24:y:1998:i:4:p:415-428. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Prof. Werner Antweiler)

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.