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Consumer Attitudes and the Epidemiology of Inflation Expectations

Listed author(s):
  • Michael Ehrmann
  • Damjan Pfajfar
  • Emiliano Santoro

This paper studies the formation of consumers’ inflation expectations using micro-level data from the Michigan Survey. It shows that beyond the well-established socio-economic determinants of inflation expectations such as gender, income or education, other characteristics such as the households’ financial situation and their purchasing attitudes also matter. Respondents with current or expected financial difficulties, pessimistic attitudes about major purchases, or expectations that income will go down in the future have considerably higher forecast errors, are further away from professional forecasts, and have a stronger upward bias in their expectations than other households. However, their bias shrinks by more than that of the average household in response to increasing media reporting about inflation.

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File URL: http://www.bankofcanada.ca/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/wp2014-28.pdf
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Paper provided by Bank of Canada in its series Staff Working Papers with number 14-28.

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Length: 38 pages
Date of creation: 2014
Handle: RePEc:bca:bocawp:14-28
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Web page: http://www.bank-banque-canada.ca/

References listed on IDEAS
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  1. Doepke Joerg & Dovern Jonas & Fritsche Ulrich & Slacalek Jiri, 2008. "The Dynamics of European Inflation Expectations," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 8(1), pages 1-23, March.
  2. He, Zhongzhi (Lawrence) & Kryzanowski, Lawrence, 2008. "Dynamic betas for Canadian sector portfolios," International Review of Financial Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 17(5), pages 1110-1122, December.
  3. 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.
  4. N. Gregory Mankiw & Ricardo Reis & Justin Wolfers, 2004. "Disagreement about Inflation Expectations," NBER Chapters,in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2003, Volume 18, pages 209-270 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Avichai Snir & Daniel Levy, 2011. "Shrinking Goods and Sticky Prices: Theory and Evidence," Working Papers 2011-03, Bar-Ilan University, Department of Economics.
  6. Michael J. Lamla & Thomas Maag, 2012. "The Role of Media for Inflation Forecast Disagreement of Households and Professional Forecasters," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 44(7), pages 1325-1350, October.
  7. Sims, Christopher A., 2003. "Implications of rational inattention," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(3), pages 665-690, April.
  8. Menz, Jan-Oliver & Poppitz, Philipp, 2013. "Household`s Disagreement on Inflation Expectations and Socioeconomic Media Exposure in Germany," Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order 80006, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
  9. Céline Christensen & Peter Els & Maarten Rooij, 2006. "Dutch Households’ Perceptions of Economic Growth and Inflation," De Economist, Springer, vol. 154(2), pages 277-294, June.
  10. Olivier Coibion & Yuriy Gorodnichenko, 2015. "Information Rigidity and the Expectations Formation Process: A Simple Framework and New Facts," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 105(8), pages 2644-2678, August.
  11. Pfajfar, D. & Santoro, E., 2008. "Asymmetries in Inflation Expectation Formation Across Demographic Groups," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 0824, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
  12. Marco Malgarini, 2009. "Quantitative Inflation Perceptions and Expectations of Italian Consumers," Giornale degli Economisti, GDE (Giornale degli Economisti e Annali di Economia), Bocconi University, vol. 68(1), pages 53-80, April.
  13. Kahneman, Daniel & Tversky, Amos, 1979. "Prospect Theory: An Analysis of Decision under Risk," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(2), pages 263-291, March.
  14. Georganas, Sotiris & Healy, Paul J. & Li, Nan, 2014. "Frequency bias in consumers׳ perceptions of inflation: An experimental study," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 67(C), pages 144-158.
  15. Easaw, Joshy & Golinelli, Roberto & Malgarini, Marco, 2013. "What determines households inflation expectations? Theory and evidence from a household survey," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 61(C), pages 1-13.
  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. Ranyard, Rob & Missier, Fabio Del & Bonini, Nicolao & Duxbury, Darren & Summers, Barbara, 2008. "Perceptions and expectations of price changes and inflation: A review and conceptual framework," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 29(4), pages 378-400, August.
  18. 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.
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