IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/tpr/restat/v98y2016i3p503-523.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

The Price Is Right: Updating Inflation Expectations in a Randomized Price Information Experiment

Author

Listed:
  • Olivier Armantier

    (Federal Reserve Bank of New York)

  • Scott Nelson

    (MIT)

  • Giorgio Topa

    (Federal Reserve Bank of New York)

  • Wilbert van der Klaauw

    (Federal Reserve Bank of New York)

  • Basit Zafar

    (Federal Reserve Bank of New York)

Abstract

Using a unique, randomized information experiment embedded in a survey, this paper investigates how consumers’ inflation expectations respond to new information. We find that respondents, on average, update their expectations in response to (certain types of) information, and do so sensibly, in a manner consistent with Bayesian updating. As a result of information provision, the distribution of inflation expectations converges toward its center and cross-sectional disagreement declines. We document heterogeneous information processing by gender and present suggestive evidence of respondents forecasting under asymmetric loss. Our results provide support for expectation-formation models in which agents form expectations rationally but face information constraints.

Suggested Citation

  • Olivier Armantier & Scott Nelson & Giorgio Topa & Wilbert van der Klaauw & Basit Zafar, 2016. "The Price Is Right: Updating Inflation Expectations in a Randomized Price Information Experiment," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 98(3), pages 503-523, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:98:y:2016:i:3:p:503-523
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.mitpressjournals.org/doi/pdf/10.1162/REST_a_00499
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Wändi Bruine de Bruin & Simon M. Potter & Robert W. Rich & Giorgio Topa & Wilbert Van der Klaauw, 2010. "Improving survey measures of household inflation expectations," Current Issues in Economics and Finance, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, vol. 16(Aug/Sep).
    2. Lanne, Markku & Luoma, Arto & Luoto, Jani, 2009. "A naïve sticky information model of households' inflation expectations," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 33(6), pages 1332-1344, June.
    3. Zwane, A. P. & Zinman, J. & Van Dusen, E. & Pariente, W. & Null, C. & Miguel, E. & Kremer, Michael R. & Karlan, D. S. & Hornbeck, Richard A. & Gine, X. & Duflo, E. & Devoto, F. & Crepon, B. & Banerjee, 2011. "Being Surveyed Can Change Later Behavior and Related Parameter Estimates," Scholarly Articles 11339433, Harvard University Department of Economics.
    4. N. Gregory Mankiw & Ricardo Reis, 2002. "Sticky Information versus Sticky Prices: A Proposal to Replace the New Keynesian Phillips Curve," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 117(4), pages 1295-1328.
    5. Ball, Laurence & Gregory Mankiw, N. & Reis, Ricardo, 2005. "Monetary policy for inattentive economies," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(4), pages 703-725, May.
    6. Lamla, Michael J. & Lein, Sarah M., 2014. "The role of media for consumers’ inflation expectation formation," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 106(C), pages 62-77.
    7. Matthew Gentzkow & Jesse M. Shapiro, 2006. "Media Bias and Reputation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 114(2), pages 280-316, April.
    8. Robert D. J. Anderson, 2008. "US Consumer Inflation Expectations: Evidence Regarding Learning, Accuracy and Demographics," Centre for Growth and Business Cycle Research Discussion Paper Series 99, Economics, The Univeristy of Manchester.
    9. Muriel Niederle & Lise Vesterlund, 2007. "Do Women Shy Away From Competition? Do Men Compete Too Much?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 122(3), pages 1067-1101.
    10. Olivier Armantier & Wändi Bruine de Bruin & Giorgio Topa & Wilbert Klaauw & Basit Zafar, 2015. "Inflation Expectations And Behavior: Do Survey Respondents Act On Their Beliefs?," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 56, pages 505-536, May.
    11. Keane, Michael P & Runkle, David E, 1990. "Testing the Rationality of Price Forecasts: New Evidence from Panel Data," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(4), pages 714-735, September.
    12. Matthew Wiswall & Basit Zafar, 2015. "Determinants of College Major Choice: Identification using an Information Experiment," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 82(2), pages 791-824.
    13. Ang, Andrew & Bekaert, Geert & Wei, Min, 2007. "Do macro variables, asset markets, or surveys forecast inflation better?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(4), pages 1163-1212, May.
    14. Carlos Madeira & Basit Zafar, 2015. "Heterogeneous Inflation Expectations and Learning," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 47(5), pages 867-896, August.
    15. Christopher D. Carroll, 2003. "Macroeconomic Expectations of Households and Professional Forecasters," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 118(1), pages 269-298.
    16. Souleles, Nicholas S, 2004. "Expectations, Heterogeneous Forecast Errors, and Consumption: Micro Evidence from the Michigan Consumer Sentiment Surveys," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 36(1), pages 39-72, February.
    17. Robert B. Barsky & Lutz Kilian, 2002. "Do We Really Know that Oil Caused the Great Stagflation? A Monetary Alternative," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2001, Volume 16, pages 137-198, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    18. Bruin, Wändi Bruine de & Olivier Armantier & Julie S. Downs & Baruch Fischhoff & Giorgio Topa & Wilbert Van der Klaauw, 2010. "The effect of question wording on reported expectations and perceptions of inflation," Staff Reports 443, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
    19. Jonung, Lars, 1981. "Perceived and Expected Rates of Inflation in Sweden," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(5), pages 961-968, December.
    20. David W. Carter & J. Walter Milon, 2005. "Price Knowledge in Household Demand for Utility Services," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 81(2).
    21. Robert Jensen, 2010. "The (Perceived) Returns to Education and the Demand for Schooling," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 125(2), pages 515-548.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    inflation expectations; information; heterogeneous expectations; updating; Bayesian learning;

    JEL classification:

    • C81 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Data Collection and Data Estimation Methodology; Computer Programs - - - Methodology for Collecting, Estimating, and Organizing Microeconomic Data; Data Access
    • D80 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - General
    • E31 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Price Level; Inflation; Deflation

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:98:y:2016:i:3:p:503-523. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Ann Olson). General contact details of provider: https://www.mitpressjournals.org/ .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.