IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/fip/fedker/y1999iqiiip47-64nv.84no.3.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

The value of interest rate smoothing : how the private sector helps the Federal Reserve

Author

Listed:
  • Jeffery D. Amato
  • Thomas Laubach

Abstract

Most central banks conduct monetary policy by setting targets for overnight interest rates. During the 1990s, central banks have tended to move these interest rates in small steps without reversing direction quickly, a practice called interest rate smoothing. For example, the majority of Federal Reserve policy moves in the last decade and a half have come in a sequence of 25 basis point moves, in striking contrast to the early 1980s, when short-term interest rates fluctuated widely. In light of this historical contrast, it is natural to ask whether interest rate smoothing is a desirable way to conduct monetary policy.> Amato and Laubach argue that interest rate smoothing is beneficial because the private sector is forward-looking. The private sector bases its decisions on expectations of the future. Thus, a monetary policy move today will be more effective if it is expected to persist over time. By smoothing interest rates, the size of changes in interest rates required to reduce fluctuations in the economy can be smaller than would otherwise be necessary.

Suggested Citation

  • Jeffery D. Amato & Thomas Laubach, 1999. "The value of interest rate smoothing : how the private sector helps the Federal Reserve," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, vol. 84(Q III), pages 47-64.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedker:y:1999:i:qiii:p:47-64:n:v.84no.3
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://www.kansascityfed.org/documents/987/The_Value_of_Interest_Rate_Smoothing_How_the_Private_Sector_Helps_the_Federal_ReserveD.pdf
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Miron, Jeffrey A, 1986. "Financial Panics, the Seasonality of the Nominal Interest Rate, and theFounding of the Fed," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(1), pages 125-140, March.
    2. Ben S. Bernanke & Julio J. Rotemberg (ed.), 1997. "NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1997," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 026252242x, December.
    3. Ben S. Bernanke & Julio J. Rotemberg, 1997. "Editorial in "NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1997, Volume 12"," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1997, Volume 12, pages 1-6, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Michael Woodford, 1999. "Optimal Monetary Policy Inertia," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 67(s1), pages 1-35.
    5. Michael Woodford, 1999. "Optimal monetary policy inertia," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
    6. Ben S. Bernanke & Julio J. Rotemberg, 1997. "NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1997, Volume 12," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number bern97-1, February.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Daniela Bragoli & Massimiliano Rigon & Francesco Zanetti, 2016. "Optimal Inflation Weights in the Euro Area," International Journal of Central Banking, International Journal of Central Banking, vol. 12(2), pages 357-383, June.
    2. Huang, Kevin X.D. & Meng, Qinglai & Xue, Jianpo, 2009. "Is forward-looking inflation targeting destabilizing? The role of policy's response to current output under endogenous investment," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 409-430, February.
    3. Amato, Jeffery D. & Laubach, Thomas, 2003. "Rule-of-thumb behaviour and monetary policy," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 47(5), pages 791-831, October.
    4. Steinsson, Jon, 2003. "Optimal monetary policy in an economy with inflation persistence," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(7), pages 1425-1456, October.
    5. Kevin X.D. Huang & Qinglai Meng, 2014. "Returns to Scale, Market Power, and the Nature of Price Rigidity in New Keynesian Models with Self‐Fulfilling Expectations," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 46(2-3), pages 293-320, March.
    6. Marco Paolo Tucci, 2019. "The usual robust control framework in discrete time: Some interesting results," Department of Economics University of Siena 815, Department of Economics, University of Siena.
    7. Tetlow, Robert J. & von zur Muehlen, Peter, 2009. "Robustifying learnability," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 296-316, February.
    8. Michael Paetz, 2007. "Robust Control and Persistence in the New Keynesian Economy," Quantitative Macroeconomics Working Papers 20711, Hamburg University, Department of Economics.
    9. André Marine Charlotte & Dai Meixing, 2018. "Learning, robust monetary policy and the merit of precaution," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 18(2), pages 1-20, June.
    10. Mele, Antonio & Molnár, Krisztina & Santoro, Sergio, 2020. "On the perils of stabilizing prices when agents are learning," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 115(C), pages 339-353.
    11. Marc Giannoni & Michael Woodford, 2004. "Optimal Inflation-Targeting Rules," NBER Chapters, in: The Inflation-Targeting Debate, pages 93-172, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    12. De Paoli, Bianca, 2009. "Monetary policy and welfare in a small open economy," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 77(1), pages 11-22, February.
    13. Weymark, Diana N., 2004. "Economic structure, policy objectives, and optimal interest rate policy at low inflation rates," The North American Journal of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 15(1), pages 25-51, March.
    14. McCallum, Bennett T, 2000. "Theoretical Analysis Regarding a Zero Lower Bound on Nominal Interest Rates," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 32(4), pages 870-904, November.
    15. Carlsson, Mikael & Westermark, Andreas, 2011. "The New Keynesian Phillips Curve and staggered price and wage determination in a model with firm-specific labor," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 35(4), pages 579-603, April.
    16. Richard K. Crump & Stefano Eusepi & Domenico Giannone & Eric Qian & Argia M. Sbordone, 2021. "A Large Bayesian VAR of the United States Economy," Staff Reports 976, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
    17. Jordi Galí & J. David López-Salido & Javier Vallés, 2007. "Understanding the Effects of Government Spending on Consumption," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 5(1), pages 227-270, March.
    18. Antonella Trigari, 2009. "Equilibrium Unemployment, Job Flows, and Inflation Dynamics," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 41(1), pages 1-33, February.
    19. Hanson Michael S. & Kapinos Pavel S., 2008. "Endogenous Persistence and the Performance of Inertial Targeting Rules," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 8(1), pages 1-31, March.
    20. Zheng Liu & Daniel F. Waggoner & Tao Zha, 2009. "Sources of the Great Moderation: shocks, frictions, or monetary policy?," FRB Atlanta Working Paper 2009-03, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:fip:fedker:y:1999:i:qiii:p:47-64:n:v.84no.3. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/frbkcus.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/frbkcus.html .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.