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The natural rate of interest: which concept? which estimation method? which policy conclusions?

  • Jesús Crespo Cuaresma
  • Ernest Gnan

The natural rate of interest has become popular again both in academic and monetary policy circles. But which concept are we actually talking about? This paper argues that there are manyâtheoretical and empiricalâuncertainties that limit the application of the natural rate in practical monetary policy. Examples of natural rate of interest estimates for the euro area are compared, as well as monetary policy rules derived from them. The paper concludes with a tentative longer-term perspective on the future outlook for the natural rate in the euro area, touching upon effects from aging, productivity developments, private and public savings, as well as globalization.

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Article provided by M.E. Sharpe, Inc. in its journal Journal of Post Keynesian Economics.

Volume (Year): 29 (2007)
Issue (Month): 4 (July)
Pages: 667-688

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Handle: RePEc:mes:postke:v:29:y:2007:i:4:p:667-688
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  1. Katharine S. Neiss and Edward Nelson, 2001. "The Real Interest Rate Gap as an Inflation Indicator," Computing in Economics and Finance 2001 145, Society for Computational Economics.
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  8. Saarenheimo , Tuomas, 2005. "Ageing, interest rates, and financial flows," Research Discussion Papers 2/2005, Bank of Finland.
  9. Crespo-Cuaresma, Jesus & Gnan, Ernest & Ritzberger-Grunwald, Doris, 2004. "Using pre-EMU money market rates to assess monetary policy in the euro area," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 21(6), pages 1003-1014, December.
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  12. Jesus Crespo Cuaresma & Ernest Gnan & Doris Ritzberger-Grünwald, 2003. "Searching for the Natural Rate of Interest: a Euro-Area Perspective," Working Papers 84, Oesterreichische Nationalbank (Austrian Central Bank).
  13. Athanasios Orphanides, 1998. "Monetary policy rules based on real-time data," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 1998-03, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
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  15. Nils Björksten & Özer Karagedikli, 2003. "Neutral real interest rates revisited," Reserve Bank of New Zealand Bulletin, Reserve Bank of New Zealand, vol. 66, pages 11, September.
  16. Ernst Glatzer & Ernest Gnan & Maria Teresa Valderrama, 2006. "Globalization, Import Prices and Producer Prices in Austria," Monetary Policy & the Economy, Oesterreichische Nationalbank (Austrian Central Bank), issue 3, pages 24–43.
  17. Ernest Gnan & Doris Ritzberger-Grünwald, 2005. "The Natural Rate of Interest — Concepts and Appraisal for the Euro Area," Monetary Policy & the Economy, Oesterreichische Nationalbank (Austrian Central Bank), issue 4, pages 19–47.
  18. Gerhard Reitschuler & Jesús Crespo Cuaresma, 2004. "Ricardian Equivalence Revisited: Evidence from OECD countries," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 5(16), pages 1-10.
  19. Jesús Cuaresma & Ernest Gnan & Doris Ritzberger-Gruenwald, 2004. "Searching for the natural rate of interest: a euro area perspective," Economic Change and Restructuring, Springer, vol. 31(2), pages 185-204, June.
  20. Tuomas Saarenheimo, 2005. "Ageing, interest rates, and financial flows," Labor and Demography 0508015, EconWPA.
  21. Ernest Gnan & Maria Teresa Valderrama, 2006. "Globalization, Inflation and Monetary Policy," Monetary Policy & the Economy, Oesterreichische Nationalbank (Austrian Central Bank), issue 4, pages 37–54.
  22. Saarenheimo, Tuomas, 2005. "Ageing, interest rates, and financial flows," Research Discussion Papers 2/2005, Bank of Finland.
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