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The Great Inflation of the 1970s

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  • FABRICE COLLARD
  • HARRIS DELLAS

Abstract

The two leading explanations for the poor inflation performance during the 1970s are policy opportunism (Barro and Gordon 1983) and "inadvertently" bad monetary policy (Clarida, Gali, and Gertler 2000, Orphanides 2003). The main models of the latter category are that of Orphanides (loose monetary policy was the outcome of mis-perceptions about potential output rather than of inflation tolerance) and of Clarida, Gali, and Gertler (weak policy reaction to expected inflation led to indeterminacies). We show that both of these models can account for high and persistent inflation and also have satisfactory overall performance if an exceptionally large decrease in productivity took place at that time. Copyright 2007 The Ohio State University.

Suggested Citation

  • Fabrice Collard & Harris Dellas, 2007. "The Great Inflation of the 1970s," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 39(2-3), pages 713-731, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:mcb:jmoncb:v:39:y:2007:i:2-3:p:713-731
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    1. Mark Bils & Peter J. Klenow, 2004. "Some Evidence on the Importance of Sticky Prices," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(5), pages 947-985, October.
    2. Nelson, Edward & Nikolov, Kalin, 2004. "Monetary Policy and Stagflation in the UK," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 36(3), pages 293-318, June.
    3. Athanasios Orphanides & John Williams, 2004. "Imperfect Knowledge, Inflation Expectations, and Monetary Policy," NBER Chapters, in: The Inflation-Targeting Debate, pages 201-246, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    8. Ehrmann, Michael & Smets, Frank, 2003. "Uncertain potential output: implications for monetary policy," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 27(9), pages 1611-1638, July.
    9. Orphanides, Athanasios & Williams, John C., 2005. "The decline of activist stabilization policy: Natural rate misperceptions, learning, and expectations," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 29(11), pages 1927-1950, November.
    10. Orphanides, Athanasios, 2003. "The quest for prosperity without inflation," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(3), pages 633-663, April.
    11. Thomas A. Lubik & Frank Schorfheide, 2004. "Testing for Indeterminacy: An Application to U.S. Monetary Policy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(1), pages 190-217, March.
    12. V. V Chari & Patrick J. Kehoe & Ellen R. McGrattan, 2002. "Can Sticky Price Models Generate Volatile and Persistent Real Exchange Rates?," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 69(3), pages 533-563.
    13. James Bullard & Stefano Eusepi, 2005. "Did the Great Inflation Occur Despite Policymaker Commitment to a Taylor Rule?," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 8(2), pages 324-359, April.
    14. Cukierman, Alex & Lippi, Francesco, 2005. "Endogenous monetary policy with unobserved potential output," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 29(11), pages 1951-1983, November.
    15. Thomas Sargent & Noah Williams & Tao Zha, 2009. "The Conquest of South American Inflation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 117(2), pages 211-256, April.
    16. Svensson, Lars E. O. & Woodford, Michael, 2003. "Indicator variables for optimal policy," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(3), pages 691-720, April.
    17. Orphanides, Athanasios, 2004. "Monetary Policy Rules, Macroeconomic Stability, and Inflation: A View from the Trenches," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 36(2), pages 151-175, April.
    18. Orphanides, Athanasios, 2004. "Monetary Policy Rules, Macroeconomic Stability, and Inflation: A View from the Trenches," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 36(2), pages 151-175, April.
    19. Ireland, Peter N., 1999. "Does the time-consistency problem explain the behavior of inflation in the United States?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(2), pages 279-291, October.
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    1. Orphanides, Athanasios & Williams, John C., 2005. "The decline of activist stabilization policy: Natural rate misperceptions, learning, and expectations," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 29(11), pages 1927-1950, November.
    2. Fabrice Collard & Harris Dellas, 2008. "Monetary Policy and Inflation in the 70s," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 40(8), pages 1765-1781, December.
    3. Trunin, Pavel (Трунин, Павел) & Bozhechkova, Alexandra (Божечкова, Александра) & Goryunov, Eugene (Горюнов, Евгений) & Petrova, Diana, 2017. "Analysis of Approaches to Accounting of the Information Effects of Monetary Policy [Анализ Подходов К Учету Информационных Эффектов Денежно-Кредитной Политики]," Working Papers 031723, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration.
    4. Sharon Kozicki & Peter A. Tinsley, 2005. "Perhaps the FOMC did what it said it did : an alternative interpretation of the Great Inflation," Research Working Paper RWP 05-04, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.
    5. repec:zbw:cfswop:wp200424 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Elmar Mertens, 2016. "Managing Beliefs about Monetary Policy under Discretion," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 48(4), pages 661-698, June.
    7. Marco Airaudo & Luca Bossi, 2017. "Consumption Externalities And Monetary Policy With Limited Asset Market Participation," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 55(1), pages 601-623, January.

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy

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