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Optimal versus realized policy rules in a regime-switching framework

  • Pardo, S.
  • Rautureau, N.
  • Vallée, T.

In this paper we compare a deterministic model and a Markov switching model to analyze the behavior of the US economy and the Federal Reserve. We examine both optimal and empirical monetary policies for the US Federal Reserve between 1960 and 2008. We compare the optimal monetary policy to the actual interest rates and to the empirical reaction function. We also evaluate the sensitivity of the results to the preferences assigned to each objective. We find that there is no unique optimal solution that fits the Federal Reserve behavior over the entire period. The best fit to the actual interest rates is obtained by an optimal policy with preference switches following the rule: a high-volatility regime coincides with a priority on inflation alone while in a low-volatility regime there is equal policy priority on output stabilization and inflation.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Economic Modelling.

Volume (Year): 28 (2011)
Issue (Month): 6 ()
Pages: 2761-2775

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Handle: RePEc:eee:ecmode:v:28:y:2011:i:6:p:2761-2775
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  1. Davig, Troy, 2004. "Regime-switching debt and taxation," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(4), pages 837-859, May.
  2. 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..
  3. Troy Davig & Eric M. Leeper, 2007. "Generalizing the Taylor Principle," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(3), pages 607-635, June.
  4. Clarida, R. & Gali, J. & Gertler, M., 1998. "Monetary Policy Rules and Macroeconomic Stability: Evidence and some Theory," Working Papers 98-01, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  5. 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.
  6. Andrew P Blake & Fabrizio Zampolli, 2006. "Optimal monetary policy in Markov-switching models with rational expectations agents," Bank of England working papers 298, Bank of England.
  7. Favero, Carlo A & Rovelli, Riccardo, 2003. " Macroeconomic Stability and the Preferences of the Fed: A Formal Analysis, 1961-98," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 35(4), pages 545-56, August.
  8. Richard Dennis, 2006. "The policy preferences of the US Federal Reserve," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 21(1), pages 55-77.
  9. Richard Dennis, 2003. "Inferring policy objectives from economic outcomes," Working Paper Series 2003-05, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  10. Ozlale, Umit, 2003. "Price stability vs. output stability: tales of federal reserve administrations," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 27(9), pages 1595-1610, July.
  11. Lars E.O. Svensson & Noah Williams, 2008. "Optimal monetary policy under uncertainty: a Markov jump-linear-quadratic approach," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Jul, pages 275-294.
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