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Inflation-Forecast-Based Rules and Indeterminacy: A Puzzle and a Resolution


  • Paul Levine

    (University of Surrey)

  • Peter McAdam

    (European Central Bank)

  • Joseph Pearlman

    (London Metropolitan University)


We examine an interesting puzzle in monetary economics between what monetary authorities claim (namely, to be forward looking and preemptive) and the poor stabilization properties routinely reported for forecast-based rules. Our resolution is that central banks should be viewed as following 'Calvo-type' inflation-forecast-based (IFB) interest rate rules that depend on a discounted sum of current and future rates of inflation. Such rules might be regarded as both within the legal frameworks and potentially mimicking central bankers' practice. We find that Calvo-type IFB interest rate rules are, first, less prone to indeterminacy than standard rules with a finite forward horizon. Second, in difference form, the indeterminacy problem disappears altogether. Third, optimized forms have good stabilization properties as they become more forward looking, a property that sharply contrasts that of standard IFB rules. Fourth, they appear data coherent when incorporated into a well-known estimated dynamic stochastic general equilibrium (DSGE) model of the euro area.

Suggested Citation

  • Paul Levine & Peter McAdam & Joseph Pearlman, 2007. "Inflation-Forecast-Based Rules and Indeterminacy: A Puzzle and a Resolution," International Journal of Central Banking, International Journal of Central Banking, vol. 3(4), pages 77-110, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:ijc:ijcjou:y:2007:q:4:a:3

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Batini, Nicoletta & Justiniano, Alejandro & Levine, Paul & Pearlman, Joseph, 2006. "Robust inflation-forecast-based rules to shield against indeterminacy," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 30(9-10), pages 1491-1526.
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    Cited by:

    1. Eurilton Araújo & Débora Gouveia, 2013. "Calvo-type rules and the forward-looking behavior of inflation targeting central banks," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 33(3), pages 2042-2051.
    2. Best Gabriela & Kapinos Pavel, 2016. "Monetary policy and news shocks: are Taylor rules forward-looking?," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 16(2), pages 335-360, June.
    3. Nikola Mirkov & Gisle James Natvik, 2016. "Announcements of Interest Rate Forecasts: Do Policymakers Stick to Them?," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 48(5), pages 901-920, August.
    4. Argov, Eyal & Elkayam, David, 2007. "An Estimated New Keynesian Model for Israel," MPRA Paper 9412, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. McAdam, Peter & Willman, Alpo, 2007. "State-dependency and firm-level optimization: a contribution to Calvo price staggering," Working Paper Series 806, European Central Bank.
    6. PETER McADAM & ALPO WILLMAN, 2013. "Technology, Utilization, and Inflation: What Drives the New Keynesian Phillips Curve?," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 45(8), pages 1547-1579, December.
    7. Argov, Eyal & Binyamini, Alon & Elkayam, David & Rozenshtrom, Irit, 2007. "A Small Macroeconomic Model to Support Inflation Targeting in Israel," MPRA Paper 4784, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. d'Albis, Hippolyte & Augeraud-Véron, Emmanuelle & Hupkes, Hermen Jan, 2014. "Bounded interest rate feedback rules in continuous-time," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 39(C), pages 227-236.
    9. Gabriel, Vasco J. & Levine, Paul & Spencer, Christopher, 2009. "How forward-looking is the Fed? Direct estimates from a 'Calvo-type' rule," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 104(2), pages 92-95, August.
    10. Peter Mcadam & Alpo Willman, 2010. "Arrow-Calvo Price Staggering," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 78(6), pages 556-581, December.
    11. Ida Wolden Bache & Øistein Røislanda & Kjersti Næss Torstensen, 2011. "Interest Rate Smoothing and "Calvo-Type" Interest Rate Rules: A Comment on Levine, McAdam, and Pearlman (2007)," International Journal of Central Banking, International Journal of Central Banking, vol. 7(3), pages 79-90, September.
    12. Ali, Syed Zahid & Anwar, Sajid, 2017. "Exchange rate pass through, cost channel to monetary policy transmission, adaptive learning, and the price puzzle," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 69-82.
    13. Levine, Paul & McAdam, Peter & Pierse, Richard & Pearlman, Joseph G., 2008. "Risk Management in Action. Robust monetary policy rules under structured uncertainty," Working Paper Series 870, European Central Bank.
    14. Kapinos, Pavel, 2011. "Forward-looking monetary policy and anticipated shocks to inflation," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 620-633.
    15. Loisel, O., 2006. "Bubble-free interest-rate rules," Working papers 161, Banque de France.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy
    • E37 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Forecasting and Simulation: Models and Applications
    • 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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