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Optimal Inflation Targeting under Alternative Fiscal Regimes

In: Monetary Policy under Inflation Targeting

Author

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  • Pierpaolo Benigno

    (Einaudi Institute for Economic and Finance)

  • Michael Woodford

    (Columbia University)

Abstract

Flexible inflation targeting has been advocated as a practical approach to the implementation of an optimal state-contingent monetary policy, but theoretical expositions reaching this conclusion have typically abstracted from the fiscal consequences of monetary policy. Here we extend the standard theory by considering the character of optimal monetary policy under a variety of assumptions about the fiscal regime, with the standard analysis appearing only as a special case in which non-distorting sources of government revenue exist, and fiscal policy can be relied upon to adjust so as to ensure intertemporal government solvency. Alternative cases treated in this paper include ones in which there exist only distorting sources of government revenue; and also ones in which fiscal policy is purely exogenous, so that the central bank cannot rely upon fiscal policy to adjust in order to maintain intertemporal solvency (a case emphasized in the critique of inflation targeting by Sims, 2005). We find that the fiscal policy regime has important consequences for the optimal conduct of monetary policy, but that a suitably modified form of inflation targeting will still represent a useful approach to the implementation of optimal policy. We derive an optimal targeting rule for monetary policy that applies to all of the fiscal regimes considered in this paper, and show that it involves commitment to an explicit target for an output-gap adjusted price level. The optimal policy will allow temporary departures from the long-run target rate of growth in the gap-adjusted price level in response to disturbances that affect the government’s budget, but it will also involve a commitment to rapidly restore the projected growth rate of this variable to its normal level following such disturbances, so that medium-term inflation expectations should remain firmly anchored despite the occurrence of fiscal shocks.
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Suggested Citation

  • Pierpaolo Benigno & Michael Woodford, 2007. "Optimal Inflation Targeting under Alternative Fiscal Regimes," Central Banking, Analysis, and Economic Policies Book Series,in: Frederic S. Miskin & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel & Norman Loayza (Series Editor) & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel (Se (ed.), Monetary Policy under Inflation Targeting, edition 1, volume 11, chapter 3, pages 037-075 Central Bank of Chile.
  • Handle: RePEc:chb:bcchsb:v11c03pp037-075
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Pierpaolo Benigno & Michael Woodford, 2005. "Inflation Stabilization And Welfare: The Case Of A Distorted Steady State," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 3(6), pages 1185-1236, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. Canzoneri, Matthew & Cumby, Robert & Diba, Behzad, 2010. "The Interaction Between Monetary and Fiscal Policy," Handbook of Monetary Economics,in: Benjamin M. Friedman & Michael Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Monetary Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 17, pages 935-999 Elsevier.
    2. Woodford, Michael, 2010. "Optimal Monetary Stabilization Policy," Handbook of Monetary Economics,in: Benjamin M. Friedman & Michael Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Monetary Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 14, pages 723-828 Elsevier.
    3. Jalali Naini, Ahmad Reza & Naderian, Mohammad Amin, 2017. "Oil Price Cycles, Fiscal Dominance and Counter-cyclical Monetary Policy in Iran," MPRA Paper 84480, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    4. Mauro Ferreira, "undated". "Debt Maturity in a Small Open Economy Under Inflation Target," EcoMod2007 23900024, EcoMod.
    5. Philip Arestis & Alexander Mihailov, 2011. "Classifying Monetary Economics: Fields And Methods From Past To Future," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 25(4), pages 769-800, September.
    6. Mihailov, Alexander & Ullrich, Katrin, 2007. "Independence and Accountability of Monetary and Fiscal Policy Committees," ZEW Discussion Papers 07-044, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    7. Reicher, Christopher Phillip, 2009. "Fiscal Taylor rules in the postwar United States," Kiel Working Papers 1509, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    8. Christopher Adam & Stephen O’Connell & Edward Buffie, 2009. "Aid Volatility, Monetary Policy Rules and the Capital Account in African Economies," Chapters,in: Monetary Policy Frameworks for Emerging Markets, chapter 13 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    9. Michael Kumhof & Ricardo Nunes & Irina Yakadina, 2010. "Simple Monetary Rules under Fiscal Dominance," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 42(1), pages 63-92, February.
    10. Vasco Cúrdia, 2008. "Optimal monetary policy under sudden stops," Staff Reports 323, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
    11. Javier Guillermo Gómez, 2006. "Capital Flows and Monetary Policy," BORRADORES DE ECONOMIA 002097, BANCO DE LA REPÚBLICA.
    12. Ito, Arata & Watanabe, Tsutomu & Yabu, Tomoyoshi, 2011. "Fiscal policy switching in Japan, the US, and the UK," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 25(4), pages 380-413.
    13. Moinuddin, 2007. "Choice of Monetary Policy Regime: Should SBP Adopt Inflation Targeting," SBP Working Paper Series 19, State Bank of Pakistan, Research Department.
    14. Forni, Lorenzo & Monteforte, Libero & Sessa, Luca, 2009. "The general equilibrium effects of fiscal policy: Estimates for the Euro area," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 93(3-4), pages 559-585, April.
    15. Benigno, Pierpaolo, 2009. "Are valuation effects desirable from a global perspective?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(2), pages 170-180, July.
    16. David A Vines & Sven Jari Stehn, 2007. "Debt Stabilization Bias and the Taylor Principle; Optimal Policy in a New Keynesian Model with Government Debt and Inflation Persistence," IMF Working Papers 07/206, International Monetary Fund.
    17. repec:sbe:breart:v:27:y:2007:i:1:a:1573 is not listed on IDEAS
    18. Svan Jari Stehn & David Vines, 2007. "Debt Stabilisation Bias And The Taylor Principle: Optimal Policy In A New Keynesian Model With Government Debt And Inflation Persistence," CAMA Working Papers 2007-22, Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.
    19. Danciulescu, Cristina, 2014. "Macroeconomic equilibrium and welfare under simple monetary and switching fiscal policy rules," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 36(C), pages 58-68.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy
    • E63 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Comparative or Joint Analysis of Fiscal and Monetary Policy; Stabilization; Treasury Policy

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