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The role of expectations in economic fluctuations and the efficacy of monetary policy

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  • Kurz, Mordecai
  • Jin, Hehui
  • Motolese, Maurizio

Abstract

We show diverse beliefs is an important propagation mechanism of fluctuations, money non neutrality and efficacy of monetary policy. Since expectations affect demand, our theory shows economic fluctuations are mostly driven by varying demand not supply shocks. Using a competitive model with flexible prices in which agents hold Rational Belief (see Kurz (1994)) we show that (i) our economy replicates well the empirical record of fluctuations in the U.S. (ii) Under monetary rules without discretion, monetary policy has a strong stabilization effect and an aggressive anti-inflationary policy can reduce inflation volatility to zero. (iii) The statistical Phillips Curve changes substantially with policy instruments and activist policy rules render it vertical. (iv) Although prices are flexible, money shocks result in less than proportional changes in inflation hence the aggregate price level appears 'sticky' with respect to money shocks. (v) Discretion in monetary policy adds a random element to policy and increases volatility. The impact of discretion on the efficacy of policy depends upon the structure of market beliefs about future discretionary decisions. We study two rationalizable beliefs. In one case, market beliefs weaken the effect of policy and in the second, beliefs bolster policy outcomes and discretion could be a desirable attribute of the policy rule. Since the central bank does not know any more than the private sector, real social gain from discretion arise only in extraordinary cases. Hence, the weight of the argument leads us to conclude that bank's policy should be transparent and abandon discretion except for rare and unusual circumstances. (vi) An implication of our model suggests the current effective policy is only mildly activist and aims mostly to target inflation.
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  • Kurz, Mordecai & Jin, Hehui & Motolese, Maurizio, 2005. "The role of expectations in economic fluctuations and the efficacy of monetary policy," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 29(11), pages 2017-2065, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:dyncon:v:29:y:2005:i:11:p:2017-2065
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    Cited by:

    1. William Branch & George Evans, 2011. "Monetary policy and heterogeneous expectations," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 47(2), pages 365-393, June.
    2. repec:kap:compec:v:50:y:2017:i:3:d:10.1007_s10614-016-9591-2 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Kurz, Mordecai, 2008. "Beauty contests under private information and diverse beliefs: How different?," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(7-8), pages 762-784, July.
    4. Marco Celentani & J. Conde-Ruiz & Klaus Desmet, 2007. "Inflation in Open Economies with Complete Markets," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 31(2), pages 271-291, May.
    5. Mordecai Kurz, 2005. "Measuring the Ex-Ante Social Cost of Aggregate Volatility," Discussion Papers 04-006, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.
    6. Hiroyuki Nakata, 2007. "A Model of Financial Markets with Endogenously Correlated Rational Beliefs," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 30(3), pages 431-452, March.
    7. Jaqueson K. Galimberti & Nicolas Suhadolnik & Sergio Silva, 2017. "Cowboying Stock Market Herds with Robot Traders," Computational Economics, Springer;Society for Computational Economics, vol. 50(3), pages 393-423, October.
    8. Kurz, Mordecai & Piccillo, Giulia & Wu, Howei, 2013. "Modeling diverse expectations in an aggregated New Keynesian Model," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 37(8), pages 1403-1433.
    9. Schmidt, Sebastian & Wieland, Volker, 2013. "The New Keynesian Approach to Dynamic General Equilibrium Modeling: Models, Methods and Macroeconomic Policy Evaluation," Handbook of Computable General Equilibrium Modeling, Elsevier.
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    16. Mordecai Kurz, 2011. "Symposium: on the role of market belief in economic dynamics, an introduction," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 47(2), pages 189-204, June.
    17. Giovanni Di Bartolomeo & Carolina Serpieri, 2018. "Robust Optimal Policies in a Behavioural New Keynesian Model," JRC Working Papers JRC111603, Joint Research Centre (Seville site).
    18. Hehui JIN, 2007. "Nominal Interest Rate Rules under Heterogeneous Beliefs," Rivista Internazionale di Scienze Sociali, Vita e Pensiero, Pubblicazioni dell'Universita' Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, vol. 115(3), pages 403-442.
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    21. Volker Wieland & Maik Wolters, 2011. "The diversity of forecasts from macroeconomic models of the US economy," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 47(2), pages 247-292, June.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E31 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Price Level; Inflation; Deflation
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy
    • E58 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Central Banks and Their Policies
    • D58 - Microeconomics - - General Equilibrium and Disequilibrium - - - Computable and Other Applied General Equilibrium Models

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