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Experimental Evidence on the Persistence of Output and Inflation


  • Klaus Adam


This article presents experimental evidence from a monetary sticky price economy in which output and inflation depend on expected future inflation. Rational inflation expectations do not allow for persistent deviations of output and inflation following a monetary shock. In the experimental sessions, however, output and inflation display considerable persistence and regular cyclical patterns. This emerges because subjects' inflation expectations fail to be captured by rational expectations functions. Instead, a Restricted Perceptions Equilibrium (RPE), which assumes that agents use optimal but 'simple' forecast functions, describes subjects' inflation expectations surprisingly well and explains the observed behaviour of output and inflation. Copyright 2007 The Author(s). Journal compilation Royal Economic Society 2007.

Suggested Citation

  • Klaus Adam, 2007. "Experimental Evidence on the Persistence of Output and Inflation," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 117(520), pages 603-636, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:ecj:econjl:v:117:y:2007:i:520:p:603-636

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. V. V. Chari & Patrick J. Kehoe & Ellen R. McGrattan, 2000. "Sticky Price Models of the Business Cycle: Can the Contract Multiplier Solve the Persistence Problem?," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 68(5), pages 1151-1180, September.
    2. Dixit, Avinash K & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1977. "Monopolistic Competition and Optimum Product Diversity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 67(3), pages 297-308, June.
    3. Schmalensee, Richard, 1976. "An Experimental Study of Expectation Formation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 44(1), pages 17-41, January.
    4. Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum & Charles L. Evans, 2005. "Nominal Rigidities and the Dynamic Effects of a Shock to Monetary Policy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(1), pages 1-45, February.
    5. Marimon, Ramon & Sunder, Shyam, 1993. "Indeterminacy of Equilibria in a Hyperinflationary World: Experimental Evidence," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 61(5), pages 1073-1107, September.
    6. Smith, Vernon L & Suchanek, Gerry L & Williams, Arlington W, 1988. "Bubbles, Crashes, and Endogenous Expectations in Experimental Spot Asset Markets," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(5), pages 1119-1151, September.
    7. Nelson, E., 1998. "Sluggish inflation and optimizing models of the business cycle," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(2), pages 303-322, July.
    8. Sunder, S., 1992. "Experimental Asset Markets: A Survey," GSIA Working Papers 1992-19, Carnegie Mellon University, Tepper School of Business.
    9. Klaus Adam, 2003. "Learning and Equilibrium Selection in a Monetary Overlapping Generations Model with Sticky Prices," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 70(4), pages 887-907.
    10. Evans, George W & Ramey, Garey, 1992. "Expectation Calculation and Macroeconomic Dynamics," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(1), pages 207-224, March.
    11. George W. Evans & Seppo Honkapohja, 1993. "Adaptive forecasts, hysteresis, and endogenous fluctuations," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, pages 3-13.
    12. Svensson, Lars E O, 1985. "Money and Asset Prices in a Cash-in-Advance Economy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 93(5), pages 919-944, October.
    13. Frank Smets & Raf Wouters, 2003. "An Estimated Dynamic Stochastic General Equilibrium Model of the Euro Area," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 1(5), pages 1123-1175, September.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • E37 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Forecasting and Simulation: Models and Applications


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