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U.S. Wage and Price Dynamics: A Limited-Information Approach

  • Argia M. Sbordone

    (Federal Reserve Bank of New York)

This paper analyzes the dynamics of prices and wages using a limited-information approach to estimation. I estimate a two-equation model for the determination of prices and wages derived from an optimization-based dynamic model, where both goods and labor markets are monopolistically competitive, prices and wages can be reoptimized only at random intervals, and, when not reoptimized, can be partially adjusted to previous-period aggregate inflation. The estimation procedure is a two-step minimum-distance estimation, which exploits the restrictions that the model imposes on a time-series representation of the data. In the first step I estimate an unrestricted autoregressive representation of the variables of interest. In the second step, I express the model solution in the form of a constrained autoregressive representation of the data and define the distance between unconstrained and constrained representations as a function of the structural parameters that characterize the joint dynamics of inflation and labor share. This function summarizes the cross-equation restrictions between the model and the time-series representations of the data: I then estimate the parameters of interest by minimizing a quadratic function of that distance. I find that the estimated dynamics of prices and wages track actual dynamics quite well, and that the estimated parameters are consistent with the observed length of nominal contracts.

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Article provided by International Journal of Central Banking in its journal International Journal of Central Banking.

Volume (Year): 2 (2006)
Issue (Month): 3 (September)
Pages:

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Handle: RePEc:ijc:ijcjou:y:2006:q:3:a:5
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  1. Calvo, Guillermo A., 1983. "Staggered prices in a utility-maximizing framework," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 383-398, September.
  2. Sbordone, Argia, 1998. "Prices and Unit Labor Costs: A New Test of Price Stickiness," Seminar Papers 653, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
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  8. Boivin, Jean & Giannoni, Marc, 2006. "Has Monetary Policy Become More Effective?," CEPR Discussion Papers 5463, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  11. Argia M. Sbordone, 2001. "An Optimizing Model of U.S. Wage and Price Dynamics," Departmental Working Papers 200110, Rutgers University, Department of Economics.
  12. Amato, Jeffery D. & Laubach, Thomas, 2003. "Estimation and control of an optimization-based model with sticky prices and wages," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 27(7), pages 1181-1215, May.
  13. Taylor, John B., 1999. "Staggered price and wage setting in macroeconomics," Handbook of Macroeconomics, in: J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Macroeconomics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 15, pages 1009-1050 Elsevier.
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  18. Timothy Cogley & Thomas Sargent, . "Evolving Post-World War II U.S. Inflation Dynamics," Working Papers 2132872, Department of Economics, W. P. Carey School of Business, Arizona State University.
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  27. Edith Gagnon & Hashmat Khan, 2001. "New Phillips Curve with Alternative Marginal Cost Measures forCanada, the United States, and the Euro Area," Staff Working Papers 01-25, Bank of Canada.
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