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Inventories, inflation dynamics and the New Keynesian Phillips curve

  • Lubik, Thomas A.
  • Teo, Wing Leong

We introduce inventories into an otherwise standard New Keynesian model and study the implications for inflation dynamics. Inventory holdings are motivated as a means to generate sales for demand-constrained firms. We derive various representations of the New Keynesian Phillips curve with inventories and show that one of these specifications is observationally equivalent to the standard model with respect to the behavior of inflation when the model's cross-equation restrictions are imposed. However, the driving variable in the New Keynesian Phillips curve – real marginal cost – is unobservable and has to be proxied by, for instance, real unit labor cost. An alternative approach is to impute marginal cost by using the model's optimality conditions. We show that the stock–sales ratio is linked to marginal cost. We also estimate these various specifications of the New Keynesian Phillips curve using GMM. We find that the predictive power of the inventory-specification at best approaches that of the standard model, but does not improve upon it.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal European Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 56 (2012)
Issue (Month): 3 ()
Pages: 327-346

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Handle: RePEc:eee:eecrev:v:56:y:2012:i:3:p:327-346
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/eer

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  1. Thomas A. Lubik & Wing Leong Teo, 2009. "Inventories and Optimal Monetary Policy," School of Economics Working Papers 2009-33, University of Adelaide, School of Economics.
  2. Krause, M.U. & Lubik, T.A., 2003. "The (Ir)relevance of Real Wage Rigidity in the New Keynesian Model with Search Frictions," Discussion Paper 2003-113, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  3. Gabriel Perez-Quiros & Margaret M. McConnell, 2000. "Output Fluctuations in the United States: What Has Changed since the Early 1980's?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(5), pages 1464-1476, December.
  4. Bils, M. & Kahn, J.A., 1996. "What Inventory Behavior Tells Us About Business Cycles," RCER Working Papers 428, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
  5. Oleksiy Kryvtsov & Virgiliu Midrigan, 2013. "Inventories, Markups, and Real Rigidities in Menu Cost Models," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 80(1), pages 249-276.
  6. Krause, Michael & López-Salido, J David & Lubik, Thomas, 2008. "Inflation Dynamics with Search Frictions: A Structural Econometric Analysis," CEPR Discussion Papers 6810, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  7. Thomas Lubik & Frank Schorfheide, 2002. "Testing for Indeterminacy:An Application to U.S. Monetary Policy," Economics Working Paper Archive 480, The Johns Hopkins University,Department of Economics, revised Jun 2003.
  8. Jordi Galí & Mark Gertler, 1998. "Inflation dynamics: A structural econometric analysis," Economics Working Papers 341, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
  9. Aubhik Khan & Julia Thomas, 2003. "Inventories and the Business Cycle: An Equilibrium Analysis of (S,s) Policies," NBER Working Papers 10078, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Kahn, James A, 1992. "Why Is Production More Volatile Than Sales? Theory and Evidence on the Stockout-Avoidance Motive for Inventory-Holding," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 107(2), pages 481-510, May.
  11. James M. Nason & Gregor W. Smith, 2008. "The New Keynesian Phillips curve : lessons from single-equation econometric estimation," Economic Quarterly, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, issue Fall, pages 361-395.
  12. Krause, Michael U. & Lopez-Salido, David J. & Lubik, Thomas A., 2008. "Do search frictions matter for inflation dynamics?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 52(8), pages 1464-1479, November.
  13. Basu, Susanto & Fernald, John G, 1997. "Returns to Scale in U.S. Production: Estimates and Implications," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(2), pages 249-83, April.
  14. Kahn, James A, 1987. "Inventories and the Volatility of Production," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(4), pages 667-79, September.
  15. Chang, Yongsung & Hornstein, Andreas & Sarte, Pierre-Daniel, 2009. "On the employment effects of productivity shocks: The role of inventories, demand elasticity, and sticky prices," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(3), pages 328-343, April.
  16. Oleksiy Kryvtsov & Virgiliu Midrigan, 2009. "Inventories and Real Rigidities in New Keynesian Business Cycle Models," Working Papers 09-9, Bank of Canada.
  17. Martin Boileau & Marc-Andre Letendre, 2011. "Inventories, sticky prices, and the persistence of output and inflation," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 43(10), pages 1161-1174.
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