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Robust Learning Stability with Operational Monetary Policy Rules

In: Monetary Policy under Uncertainty and Learning

  • George W. Evans

    (University of Oregon)

  • Seppo Honkapohja

    (Centre for Economic Policy Research)

We consider robust stability under learning of alternative interest-rate rules. By “robust stability” we mean stability of the rational expectations equilibrium, under discounted (constant gain) least-squares learning, for a range of gain parameters. We find that many interest-rate rules are not robust, in this sense, when operational forms of policy rules are employed. Rules are considered operational if they do not depend on contemporaneous values of endogenous aggregate variables. We consider a variety of interest-rate rules, including instrument rules, optimal reaction functions under discretion or commitment, and rules that approximate optimal policy under commitment. For some of the rules that aim to achieve optimal policy, we allow for an interest-rate stabilization motive in the policy objective. The expectations-based rules proposed in Evans and Honkapohja (2003, 2006) deliver robust learning stability. In contrast, many proposed alternatives become unstable under learning even at small values of the gain parameter.

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This chapter was published in: Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel & Carl E. Walsh & Norman Loayza (Series Editor) & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel (Series Editor) (ed.) Monetary Policy under Uncertainty and Learning, , chapter 5, pages 145-170, 2009.
This item is provided by Central Bank of Chile in its series Central Banking, Analysis, and Economic Policies Book Series with number v13c05pp145-170.
Handle: RePEc:chb:bcchsb:v13c05pp145-170
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  1. Woodford, Michael, 1999. "Optimal Monetary Policy Inertia," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 67(0), pages 1-35, Supplemen.
  2. Fabio Milani, 2005. "Adaptive Learning and Inflation Persistence," Macroeconomics 0506013, EconWPA.
  3. Evans, George & Honkapohja, Seppo, 2008. "Expectations, Learning and Monetary Policy: An Overview of Recent Research," SIRE Discussion Papers 2008-03, Scottish Institute for Research in Economics (SIRE).
  4. J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.), 1999. "Handbook of Macroeconomics," Handbook of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, edition 1, volume 1, number 1.
  5. Evans, G.W. & Guesnerie, R., 1992. "Rationalizability, Strong Rationality and Expectational Stability," DELTA Working Papers 92-03, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
  6. Evans, George W. & Honkapohja, Seppo, 2003. "Adaptive Learning and Monetary Policy Design," CEPR Discussion Papers 3962, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  7. R. Anton Braun & Yuichiro Waki, 2005. "Monetary Policy during Japan's Lost Decade," CIRJE F-Series CIRJE-F-343, CIRJE, Faculty of Economics, University of Tokyo.
  8. George W. Evans & Seppo Honkapohja, 1998. "Economic Dynamics with Learning: New Stability Results," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 65(1), pages 23-44.
  9. Honkapohja, Seppo & Evans, George W., 2000. "Expectations and the stability problem for optimal monetary policies," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2000,10, Deutsche Bundesbank, Research Centre.
  10. Wiliam Branch & George W. Evans, 2005. "A Simple Recursive Forecasting Model," University of Oregon Economics Department Working Papers 2005-3, University of Oregon Economics Department, revised 01 Feb 2005.
  11. James B. Bullard, 2006. "The learnability criterion and monetary policy," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue May, pages 203-217.
  12. Athanasios Orphanides & John C. Williams, 2002. "Imperfect knowledge, inflation expectations, and monetary policy," Working Paper Series 2002-04, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  13. George W. Evans & Seppo Honkapohja & Noah Williams, 2005. "Generalized Stochastic Gradient Learning," NBER Technical Working Papers 0317, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. McCallum, Bennett T., 1999. "Issues in the design of monetary policy rules," Handbook of Macroeconomics, in: J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Macroeconomics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 23, pages 1483-1530 Elsevier.
  15. Evans, George W. & Honkapohja, Seppo, 2002. "Monetary Policy, Expectations and Commitment," CEPR Discussion Papers 3434, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  16. Milani, Fabio, 2014. "Learning and time-varying macroeconomic volatility," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 47(C), pages 94-114.
  17. Sergey Slobodyan & Anna Bogomolova, & Dmitri Kolyuzhnov, 2006. "Stochastic Gradient versus Recursive Least Squares Learning," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp309, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economics Institute, Prague.
  18. Richard Clarida & Jordi Galí & Mark Gertler, 1997. "The science of monetary policy: A new Keynesian perspective," Economics Working Papers 356, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Apr 1999.
  19. Bullard, James & Mitra, Kaushik, 2002. "Learning about monetary policy rules," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(6), pages 1105-1129, September.
  20. Bennett T. McCallum & Edward Nelson, 2000. "Timeless Perspectives vs. Discretionary Monetary Policy In Forward-Looking Models," NBER Working Papers 7915, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  21. Fabio Milani, 2005. "Expectations, Learning and Macroeconomic Persistence," Working Papers 050608, University of California-Irvine, Department of Economics.
  22. John Duffy & Wei Xiao, 2007. "The Value of Interest Rate Stabilization Policies When Agents Are Learning," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 39(8), pages 2041-2056, December.
  23. George W. Evans & Seppo Honkapohja, 2009. "Learning and Macroeconomics," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 1(1), pages 421-451, 05.
  24. M. H. Khalil Timamy, 2005. "Debate," Review of African Political Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 32(104-105), pages 383-393, June.
  25. LokSang Ho, 2006. "Role Of Fiscal And Monetary Policy," Pacific Economic Review, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 11(1), pages 121-127, 02.
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