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Gains from interest-rate smoothing in a small open economy with zero-bound aversion


  • Kam, Timothy


We extend the Monacelli [Monacelli, T. (2005). Monetary policy in a low pass-through environment. Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, 37(6), 1047-1066] model to allow for a central bank that penalizes nominal interest rate paths that are too close to the zero lower bound. We analytically derive the optimal interest-rate policy rule in each equilibrium under four policy regimes: (i) benchmark commitment to an ex-ante optimal monetary-policy plan; (ii) benchmark discretionary policy; (iii) optimal delegation to a discretionary policy maker with similar preferences to society; and (iv) optimal delegation to a discretionary policy maker with an additional taste for interest-rate smoothing. Under the commitment benchmark, the optimal interest-rate rule is proved to be intrinsically inertial, whereas this property is non-existent under discretionary policy. In the absence of commitment, there are gains to delegating policy to an interest-rate smoothing central banker. We show that while the endogenous law of one price gap in the model exacerbates the optimal policy trade-off that arises under discretionary policy, the latter feature of interest-rate smoothing acts to weaken it, by mimicking intrinsic inertia under the commitment policy.

Suggested Citation

  • Kam, Timothy, 2009. "Gains from interest-rate smoothing in a small open economy with zero-bound aversion," The North American Journal of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 20(1), pages 24-45, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ecofin:v:20:y:2009:i:1:p:24-45

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Kenneth Rogoff, 1985. "The Optimal Degree of Commitment to an Intermediate Monetary Target," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 100(4), pages 1169-1189.
    2. Adam, Klaus & Billi, Roberto M., 2006. "Optimal Monetary Policy under Commitment with a Zero Bound on Nominal Interest Rates," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 38(7), pages 1877-1905, October.
    3. Jordi Galí & Tommaso Monacelli, 2005. "Monetary Policy and Exchange Rate Volatility in a Small Open Economy," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 72(3), pages 707-734.
    4. 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.
    5. Adam, Klaus & Billi, Roberto M., 2007. "Discretionary monetary policy and the zero lower bound on nominal interest rates," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(3), pages 728-752, April.
    6. Henrik Jensen, 2002. "Targeting Nominal Income Growth or Inflation?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(4), pages 928-956, September.
    7. Michael Woodford, 1999. "Optimal monetary policy inertia," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
    8. Marco A. Espinosa-Vega & Alessandro Rebucci, 2004. "Retail Bank Interest Rate Pass-through: Is Chile Atypical?," Central Banking, Analysis, and Economic Policies Book Series,in: Luis Antonio Ahumada & J. Rodrigo Fuentes & Norman Loayza (Series Editor) & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel (Se (ed.), Banking Market Structure and Monetary Policy, edition 1, volume 7, chapter 5, pages 147-182 Central Bank of Chile.
    9. Richard Clarida & Jordi Gali & Mark Gertler, 2001. "Optimal Monetary Policy in Open versus Closed Economies: An Integrated Approach," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(2), pages 248-252, May.
    10. Amato, Jeffery D. & Laubach, Thomas, 2003. "Rule-of-thumb behaviour and monetary policy," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 47(5), pages 791-831, October.
    11. Calvo, Guillermo A., 1983. "Staggered prices in a utility-maximizing framework," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 383-398, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. Ida, Daisuke, 2013. "Optimal monetary policy rules in a two-country economy with a zero bound on nominal interest rates," The North American Journal of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 24(C), pages 223-242.


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