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Monetary policy, indeterminacy and learning

  • Evans, George W.
  • McGough, Bruce

The development of tractable forward looking models of monetary policy has lead to an explosion of research on the implications of adopting Taylor-type interest rate rules. Indeterminacies have been found to arise for some specifications of the interest rate rule, raising the possibility of inefficient fluctuations due to the dependence of expectations on extraneous sunspots . Separately, recent work by a number of authors has shown that sunspot equilibria previously thought to be unstable under private agent learning can in some cases be stable when the observed sunspot has a suitable time series structure. In this paper we generalize the common factor technique, used in this analysis, to examine standard monetary models that combine forward looking expectations and predetermined variables. We consider a variety of specifications that incorporate both lagged and expected inflation in the Phillips Curve, and both expected inflation and inertial elements in the policy rule. We find that some policy rules can indeed lead to learnable sunspot solutions and we investigate the conditions under which this phenomenon arises.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control.

Volume (Year): 29 (2005)
Issue (Month): 11 (November)
Pages: 1809-1840

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Handle: RePEc:eee:dyncon:v:29:y:2005:i:11:p:1809-1840
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/jedc

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  1. Evans, George W. & Honkapohja, Seppo, 2003. "Existence of adaptively stable sunspot equilibria near an indeterminate steady state," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 111(1), pages 125-134, July.
  2. Richard Clarida & Jordi Gali & Mark Gertler, 1998. "Monetary Policy Rules and Macroeconomic Stability: Evidence and Some Theory," NBER Working Papers 6442, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Desgranges, Gabriel & Negroni, Giorgio, 2003. "Expectations Coordination On A Sunspot Equilibrium: An Eductive Approach," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 7(01), pages 7-41, February.
  4. George W. Evans & Seppo Honkapohja, 2004. "Adaptive learning and monetary policy design," Macroeconomics 0405008, EconWPA.
  5. Farmer Roger E. A. & Guo Jang-Ting, 1994. "Real Business Cycles and the Animal Spirits Hypothesis," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 63(1), pages 42-72, June.
  6. Mark Gertler & Jordi Gali & Richard Clarida, 1999. "The Science of Monetary Policy: A New Keynesian Perspective," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(4), pages 1661-1707, December.
  7. Woodford, Michael, 1990. "Learning to Believe in Sunspots," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 58(2), pages 277-307, March.
  8. Woodford, M., 1999. "Optimal Monetary Policy Inertia.," Papers 666, Stockholm - International Economic Studies.
  9. Honkapohja, Seppo & Evans, George W., 2000. "Expectations and the stability problem for optimal monetary policies," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2000,10, Deutsche Bundesbank, Research Centre.
  10. Kaushik Mitra & Seppo Honkapohja, 2004. "Are Non-Fundamental Equilibria Learnable in Models of Monetary Policy?," Royal Holloway, University of London: Discussion Papers in Economics 04/13, Department of Economics, Royal Holloway University of London, revised Jul 2004.
  11. Bennett T. McCallum & Edward Nelson, 1998. "Performance of Operational Policy Rules in an Estimated Semi-Classical Structural Model," NBER Working Papers 6599, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Bernanke, Ben S & Woodford, Michael, 1997. "Inflation Forecasts and Monetary Policy," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 29(4), pages 653-84, November.
  13. Evans, George W. & Guesnerie, Roger, 2003. "Coordination On Saddle-Path Solutions: The Eductive Viewpoint Linear Univariate Models," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 7(01), pages 42-62, February.
  14. Evans George W & McGough Bruce, 2005. "Indeterminacy and the Stability Puzzle in Non-Convex Economies," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 5(1), pages 1-46, September.
  15. Evans George W & Honkapohja Seppo M.S. & Marimon Ramon, 2007. "Stable Sunspot Equilibria in a Cash-in-Advance Economy," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 7(1), pages 1-38, January.
  16. Howitt, Peter & McAfee, R Preston, 1992. "Animal Spirits," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(3), pages 493-507, June.
  17. Evans, George W. & Honkapohja, Seppo, 2003. "Expectational stability of stationary sunspot equilibria in a forward-looking linear model," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 171-181, October.
  18. Bullard, James & Mitra, Kaushik, 2002. "Learning about monetary policy rules," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(6), pages 1105-1129, September.
  19. Garratt, Anthony & Hall, Stephen G., 1997. "E-equilibria and adaptive expectations: Output and inflation in the LBS model," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 21(7), pages 1149-1171, June.
  20. Honkapohja, Seppo & Mitra, Kaushik, 2002. "Performance of monetary policy with internal central bank forecasting," Research Discussion Papers 3/2002, Bank of Finland.
  21. Rudebusch, Glenn D., 2002. "Term structure evidence on interest rate smoothing and monetary policy inertia," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(6), pages 1161-1187, September.
  22. George W. Evans & Bruce McGough, 2002. "Stable Sunspot Solutions in Models with Predetermined Variables," University of Oregon Economics Department Working Papers 2002-16, University of Oregon Economics Department, revised 29 May 2003.
  23. Julio J. Rotemberg & Michael Woodford, 1998. "Interest-Rate Rules in an Estimated Sticky Price Model," NBER Working Papers 6618, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  24. George Evans & Seppo Honkapohja & Paul Romer, 1996. "Growth Cycles," NBER Working Papers 5659, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  25. Taylor, John B., 1993. "Discretion versus policy rules in practice," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 195-214, December.
  26. Howitt, Peter, 1992. "Interest Rate Control and Nonconvergence to Rational Expectations," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(4), pages 776-800, August.
  27. McCallum, Bennett T., 1999. "Issues in the design of monetary policy rules," Handbook of Macroeconomics, in: J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Macroeconomics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 23, pages 1483-1530 Elsevier.
  28. Jeff Fuhrer & George Moore, 1995. "Inflation Persistence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(1), pages 127-159.
  29. Evans George W. & Honkapohja Seppo, 1994. "On the Local Stability of Sunspot Equilibria under Adaptive Learning Rules," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 142-161, October.
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