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A dynamic multivariate model for use in formulating policy

  • Tao Zha
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A policy action by the Federal Reserve consists of using any one of various instruments, such as the federal funds rate and different measures of money, to pursue its multiple objectives. Because of long and variable lags in the effects of policy actions, the process of anticipating the future is indispensable in formulating sound monetary policy. For the same reason, projecting policy effects accurately is a challenging task. An essential step is to develop good forecasting models. ; This article presents a forecasting model that seems to overcome conceptual and empirical difficulties encountered in other models and promises to provide policymakers with a more useful tool for anticipating policy effects. For clarity, the author concentrates on changes in the federal funds rate and on only one of the Fed's objectives - low and stable inflation. The model introduces new techniques that offer two distinctive advantages. One is the ability to forecast the values of key macroeconomic variables such as inflation beyond a period over which these values are known. The other is the model's explicit structure that allows empirically coherent ways to assess the uncertainty of forecasts.

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Article provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta in its journal Economic Review.

Volume (Year): (1998)
Issue (Month): Q 1 ()
Pages: 16-29

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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedaer:y:1998:i:q1:p:16-29:n:v.83no.1
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  1. Ben S. Bernanke & Frederic S. Mishkin, 1997. "Inflation Targeting: A New Framework for Monetary Policy?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 11(2), pages 97-116, Spring.
  2. Stephen G. Cecchetti, 1995. "Inflation Indicators and Inflation Policy," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1995, Volume 10, pages 189-236 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Sims, Christopher A. & Zha, Tao, 2006. "Does Monetary Policy Generate Recessions?," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 10(02), pages 231-272, April.
  4. Francis X. Diebold, 1997. "The past, present, and future of macroeconomic forecasting," Working Papers 97-20, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
  5. 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.
  6. Marco A. Espinosa-Vega & Steven Russell, 1997. "History and theory of the NAIRU: a critical review," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, issue Q 2, pages 4-25.
  7. Roberto Chang, 1997. "Is low unemployment inflationary?," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, issue Q I, pages 4-13.
  8. Sims, Christopher A, 1980. "Macroeconomics and Reality," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(1), pages 1-48, January.
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