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Improving monetary policy models

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  • Christopher A. Sims

Abstract

If macroeconomic models are to be useful in policy-making, where uncertainty is pervasive, the models must be treated as probability models, whether formally or informally. Use of explicit probability models allows us to learn systematically from past mistakes, to integrate model-based uncertainty with uncertain subjective judgment, and to bind data-bassed forecasting together with theory-based projection of policy effects. Yet in the last few decades policy models at central banks have steadily shed any claims to being believable probability models of the data to which they are fit. Here we describe the current state of policy modeling, suggest some reasons why we have reached this state, and assess some promising directions for future progress.
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Suggested Citation

  • Christopher A. Sims, 2005. "Improving monetary policy models," Proceedings, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedgpr:y:2005:x:8
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    File URL: http://www.federalreserve.gov/events/conferences/if20051202/program.htm
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Christopher A. Sims, 2002. "The Role of Models and Probabilities in the Monetary Policy Process," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 33(2), pages 1-62.
    2. Sims, Christopher A. & Waggoner, Daniel F. & Zha, Tao, 2008. "Methods for inference in large multiple-equation Markov-switching models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 146(2), pages 255-274, October.
    3. Sims, Christopher A, 2001. "Fiscal Consequences for Mexico of Adopting the Dollar," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 33(2), pages 597-616, May.
    4. Frank Schorfheide, 2000. "Loss function-based evaluation of DSGE models," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 15(6), pages 645-670.
    5. Sims, Christopher A & Uhlig, Harald, 1991. "Understanding Unit Rooters: A Helicopter Tour," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(6), pages 1591-1599, November.
    6. Matthias Doepke & Martin Schneider, 2005. "Real effects of inflation through the redistribution of nominal wealth," Staff Report 355, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
    7. Rochelle M. Edge & Michael T. Kiley & Jean-Philippe Laforte, 2005. "An estimated DSGE model of the US economy with an application to natural rate measures," Proceedings, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    8. Pedro Alvarez-Lois & Richard Harrison & Laura Piscitelli & Alasdair Scott, 2005. "Taking DSGE models to the policy environment," Proceedings, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    9. Marco Del Negro & Frank Schorfheide, 2004. "Priors from General Equilibrium Models for VARS," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 45(2), pages 643-673, May.
    10. Frank Smets & Raf Wouters, 2003. "An Estimated Dynamic Stochastic General Equilibrium Model of the Euro Area," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 1(5), pages 1123-1175, September.
    11. Christopher A. Sims, 2004. "Econometrics for Policy Analysis: Progress and Regress," De Economist, Springer, vol. 152(2), pages 167-175, June.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Levine, Paul & McAdam, Peter & Pearlman, Joseph, 2012. "Probability models and robust policy rules," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 56(2), pages 246-262.
    2. Avouyi-Dovi, Sanvi & Sahuc, Jean-Guillaume, 2011. "On the welfare costs of misspecified monetary policy objectives," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 151-161, June.
    3. Daly, Hounaida & Smida, Mounir, 2013. "Interaction entre politique monétaire et politique budgétaire:Cas de la Grèce
      [Fiscal and Monetary Policy Interactions : The Greece Case]
      ," MPRA Paper 45931, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    4. Rochelle M. Edge & Michael T. Kiley & Jean-Philippe Laforte, 2010. "A comparison of forecast performance between Federal Reserve staff forecasts, simple reduced-form models, and a DSGE model," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 25(4), pages 720-754.
    5. Stan du Plessis & Ben Smit & Rudi Steinbach, 2014. "Working Paper – WP/14/04- A medium-sized open economy DSGE model of South Africa," Working Papers 6319, South African Reserve Bank.
    6. Sofía Bauducco & Aleš Bulir & Martin Èihák, 2011. "Monetary Policy Rules with Financial Instability," Czech Journal of Economics and Finance (Finance a uver), Charles University Prague, Faculty of Social Sciences, vol. 61(6), pages 545-565, December.
    7. Daly, Hounaida & Smida, Mounir, 2013. "La coordination des politiques monétaire et budgétaire: Aperçu théorique
      [Coordination of monetary and fiscal policies: Theoretical Overview]
      ," MPRA Paper 48020, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. Daly, Hounaida & Smida, Mounir, 2014. "Fiscal Theory of Price Level," MPRA Paper 60142, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. Dario Caldara & Richard Harrison & Anna Lipińska, 2014. "Practical Tools For Policy Analysis In Dsge Models With Missing Shocks," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 29(7), pages 1145-1163, November.
    10. Francis Vitek, 2009. "Monetary Policy Analysis and Forecasting in the World Economy; A Panel Unobserved Components Approach," IMF Working Papers 09/238, International Monetary Fund.
    11. Dario Caldara & Richard Harrison & Anna Lipinska, 2012. "Practical tools for policy analysis in DSGE models with missing channels," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2012-72, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Monetary policy ; Econometric models;

    JEL classification:

    • C53 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling - - - Forecasting and Prediction Models; Simulation Methods
    • E17 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General Aggregative Models - - - Forecasting and Simulation: Models and Applications
    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy
    • E58 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Central Banks and Their Policies

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