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On the Need for a New Approach to Analyzing Monetary Policy

In: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2008, Volume 23

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  • Andrew Atkeson
  • Patrick J. Kehoe

Abstract

We present a pricing kernel that summarizes well the main features of the dynamics of interest rates and risk in postwar U.S. data and use it to uncover how the pricing kernel has moved with the short rate in this data. Our findings imply that standard monetary models miss an essential link between the central bank instrument and the economic activity that monetary policy is intended to affect and thus we call for a new approach to monetary policy analysis. We sketch a new approach using an economic model based on our pricing kernel. The model incorporates the key relationships between policy and risk movements in an unconventional way: the central bank's policy changes are viewed as primarily intended to compensate for exogenous business cycle fluctuations in risk which threaten to push inflation off target. This model, while an improvement on standard models, is considered just a starting point for their revision. It leads to critical questions that researchers need to answer as they continue to revise their approach to monetary policy analysis.
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(This abstract was borrowed from another version of this item.)

Suggested Citation

  • Andrew Atkeson & Patrick J. Kehoe, 2009. "On the Need for a New Approach to Analyzing Monetary Policy," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2008, Volume 23, pages 389-425, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberch:7290
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E5 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit
    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy
    • E58 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Central Banks and Their Policies
    • E6 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook

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