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Indeterminancy from inflation forecast targeting : problem or pseudo-problem?


  • Bennett T. McCallum


Contemporary literature on monetary policy analysis concludes that use of an interest rate policy rule that responds to expected inflation in some future period may generate indeterminacy - a multiplicity of stable rational expectations (RE) solutions. By contrast, this article argues that in these analyses only one of the solutions possesses the property of learnability, which is necessary for the plausibility of any RE solution since its absence implies that there is no way for individuals to obtain enough information to form expectations that would support the solution in question. Thus indeterminacy of the type discussed is not an actual problem for actual policymakers.

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  • Bennett T. McCallum, 2009. "Indeterminancy from inflation forecast targeting : problem or pseudo-problem?," Economic Quarterly, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, issue Win, pages 25-51.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedreq:y:2009:i:win:p:25-51:n:v.95no.1

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. King, Robert G & Watson, Mark W, 1998. "The Solution of Singular Linear Difference Systems under Rational Expectations," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 39(4), pages 1015-1026, November.
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    7. BENNETT T. McCALLUM, 2008. "How Important Is Money in the Conduct of Monetary Policy? A Comment," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 40(8), pages 1783-1790, December.
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    13. McCallum, Bennett T., 2007. "E-stability vis-a-vis determinacy results for a broad class of linear rational expectations models," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 31(4), pages 1376-1391, April.
    14. McCallum, Bennett T., 1983. "On non-uniqueness in rational expectations models : An attempt at perspective," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 11(2), pages 139-168.
    15. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1972. "Expectations and the neutrality of money," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 4(2), pages 103-124, April.
    16. Michael Woodford, 1994. "Nonstandard Indicators for Monetary Policy: Can Their Usefulness Be Judged from Forecasting Regressions?," NBER Chapters,in: Monetary Policy, pages 95-115 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    17. Evans, George W. & Honkapohja, Seppo, 2003. "Expectational stability of stationary sunspot equilibria in a forward-looking linear model," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 171-181, October.
    18. Evans, George W., 1986. "Selection criteria for models with non-uniqueness," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 147-157, September.
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    21. Bennett T. McCallum, 2001. "Monetary policy analysis in models without money," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Jul, pages 145-164.
    22. Woodford, Michael, 2003. "Comment on: Multiple-solution indeterminacies in monetary policy analysis," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(5), pages 1177-1188, July.
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