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Adaptive Learning, Persistence, and Optimal Monetary Policy

  • Vitor Gaspar
  • Frank Smets
  • David Vestin

We show that, when private sector expectations are determined in line with adaptive learning, optimal policy responds persistently to cost-push shocks. The optimal response is stronger and more persistent, the higher is the initial level of perceived inflation persistence by the private sector. Such a sophisticated policy reduces inflation persistence and inflation volatility at little cost in terms of output gap volatility. Persistent responses to cost-push shocks and stability of inflation expectations resemble optimal policy under commitment and rational expectations. Nevertheless, it is clear that the mechanism at play is very different. In the case of commitment it relies on expectations of future policy actions affecting inflation expectations; in the case of sophisticated central banking it relies on the reduction in the estimated inflation persistence parameter based on inflation data generated by shocks and policy responses. (JEL: E52) (c) 2006 by the European Economic Association.

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Article provided by MIT Press in its journal Journal of the European Economic Association.

Volume (Year): 4 (2006)
Issue (Month): 2-3 (04-05)
Pages: 376-385

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Handle: RePEc:tpr:jeurec:v:4:y:2006:i:2-3:p:376-385
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  1. Athanasios Orphanides & John C. Williams, 2003. "Imperfect Knowledge, Inflation Expectations, and Monetary Policy," NBER Working Papers 9884, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Vitor Gaspar & Frank Smets & David Vestin, 2006. "Optimal Monetary Policy under Adaptive Learning," Computing in Economics and Finance 2006 183, Society for Computational Economics.
  3. Athanasios Orphanides & John C. Williams, 2005. "Monetary policy with imperfect knowledge," Working Paper Series 2005-17, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  4. Fabio Milani, 2005. "Expectations, Learning and Macroeconomic Persistence," Macroeconomics 0510022, EconWPA.
  5. Mark Gertler & Jordi Gali & Richard Clarida, 1999. "The Science of Monetary Policy: A New Keynesian Perspective," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(4), pages 1661-1707, December.
  6. Vitor Gaspar & Frank Smets, 2005. "Monetary Policy under Adaptive Learning," Computing in Economics and Finance 2005 80, Society for Computational Economics.
  7. Frank Smets & Raf Wouters, 2003. "An Estimated Dynamic Stochastic General Equilibrium Model of the Euro Area," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 1(5), pages 1123-1175, 09.
  8. Lars E. O. Svensson, 2003. "What Is Wrong with Taylor Rules? Using Judgment in Monetary Policy through Targeting Rules," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 41(2), pages 426-477, June.
  9. Smets, Frank, 2003. "Maintaining price stability: how long is the medium term?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(6), pages 1293-1309, September.
  10. Gaspar, Vitor & Smets, Frank, 2002. "Monetary Policy, Price Stability and Output Gap Stabilization," International Finance, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 5(2), pages 193-211, Summer.
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