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Natural rate doubts

  • Beyer, Andreas
  • Farmer, Roger E.A.

This paper provides evidence for a low frequency relationship between unemployment, inflation and the nominal interest rate. I show that in the United States from 1959.1 to 1991.3, the unemployment rate, the inflation rate and the federal funds rate can be modelled as non stationary time series linked by two co-integrating equations. One of these equations is stable over the whole sample period, the other is different over the sub periods 1959.1-1979.4 and 1980.1-1999.3. I evaluate the ability of a class of models to explain these facts and conclude that models that incorporate the natural rate hypothesis are inadequate. An alternative class of models, characterized by the existence of an upward sloping long-run Phillips curve, can account for the data.

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

Volume (Year): 31 (2007)
Issue (Month): 3 (March)
Pages: 797-825

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Handle: RePEc:eee:dyncon:v:31:y:2007:i:3:p:797-825
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/jedc

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  1. Douglas Staiger & James H. Stock & Mark W. Watson, 1997. "The NAIRU, Unemployment and Monetary Policy," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 11(1), pages 33-49, Winter.
  2. Søren Johansen & Katarina Juselius, 1992. "Identification of the Long-Run and the Short-Run Structure: An Application to the ISLM Model," Discussion Papers 92-04, University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
  3. Glenn D. Rudebusch, 1996. "Do measures of monetary policy in a VAR make sense?," Working Papers in Applied Economic Theory 96-05, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  4. Benhabib, J. & Farmer, R.E.A., 1996. "The Monetary Transmission Mechanism," Working Papers 96-13, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  5. Johansen, Soren, 1988. "Statistical analysis of cointegration vectors," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 12(2-3), pages 231-254.
  6. Orphanides, Athanasios & Williams, John C., 2004. "The decline of activist stabilization policy: natural rate misperceptions, learning, and expectations," Working Paper Series 0337, European Central Bank.
  7. King, Robert G. & Plosser, Charles I. & Stock, James H. & Watson, Mark W., 1991. "Stochastic Trends and Economic Fluctuations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(4), pages 819-40, September.
  8. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1972. "Expectations and the neutrality of money," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 4(2), pages 103-124, April.
  9. Fischer, Stanley, 1977. "Long-Term Contracts, Rational Expectations, and the Optimal Money Supply Rule," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(1), pages 191-205, February.
  10. Robert J. Gordon, 1996. "The Time-Varying NAIRU and its Implications for Economic Policy," NBER Working Papers 5735, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Calvo, Guillermo A., 1983. "Staggered prices in a utility-maximizing framework," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 383-398, September.
  12. Jushan Bai & Robin L. Lumsdaine & James H. Stock, 1998. "Testing For and Dating Common Breaks in Multivariate Time Series," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 65(3), pages 395-432.
  13. Clarida, Richard & Galí, Jordi & Gertler, Mark, 1998. "Monetary Policy Rules and Macroeconomic Stability: Evidence and Some Theory," CEPR Discussion Papers 1908, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  14. Christopher A. Sims & Tao Zha, 2005. "Were There Regime Switches in U.S. Monetary Policy?," Working Papers 92, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Center for Economic Policy Studies..
  15. Robert G. King & Mark W. Watson, 1992. "Testing long run neutrality," Working Paper Series, Macroeconomic Issues 92-18, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  16. Thomas F. Cooley & Gary D. Hansen, 1987. "The Inflation Tax in a Real Business Cycle Model," UCLA Economics Working Papers 496, UCLA Department of Economics.
  17. Athanasios Orphanides, 1998. "Monetary policy rules based on real-time data," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 1998-03, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  18. Laurence Ball, 1996. "Disinflation and the NAIRU," NBER Working Papers 5520, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Orphanides, Athanasios, 2000. "The quest for prosperity without inflation," Working Paper Series 0015, European Central Bank.
  20. repec:fth:starer:9613 is not listed on IDEAS
  21. Grant, Alan P., 2002. "Time-varying estimates of the natural rate of unemployment: a revisitation of Okun's law," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 95-113.
  22. Robert J. Barro & David B. Gordon, 1981. "A Positive Theory of Monetary Policy in a Natural-Rate Model," NBER Working Papers 0807, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  23. Rudebusch, Glenn D, 1998. "Do Measures of Monetary Policy in a VAR Make Sense? A Reply," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 39(4), pages 943-48, November.
  24. Wouter J. den Haan & Garey Ramey & Joel Watson, 1999. "Contract-Theoretic Approaches to Wages and Displacement," NBER Working Papers 6972, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  25. Thomas Laubach & John C. Williams, 2001. "Measuring the natural rate of interest," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2001-56, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  26. Peter N. Ireland, 1998. "Does the Time-Consistency Problem Explain the Behavior of Inflation in the United States?," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 415, Boston College Department of Economics.
  27. Fisher, Mark E & Seater, John J, 1993. "Long-Run Neutrality and Superneutrality in an ARIMA Framework," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(3), pages 402-15, June.
  28. Katarina Juselius, 2001. "European integration and monetary transmission mechanisms: the case of Italy," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 16(3), pages 341-358.
  29. James H. Stock & Mark W. Watson, 1991. "A simple estimator of cointegrating vectors in higher order integrated systems," Working Paper Series, Macroeconomic Issues 91-3, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  30. Henrik Hansen & Søren Johansen, 1999. "Some tests for parameter constancy in cointegrated VAR-models," Econometrics Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 2(2), pages 306-333.
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