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Optimal monetary policy under low trend inflation

  • Guido Ascari

    ()

    (University of Pavia)

  • Tiziano Ropele

    ()

    (Bank of Italy)

In the monetary policy literature it is commonly assumed that trend inflation is zero, despite overwhelming evidence that zero inflation is neither empirically relevant nor a practical objective for central bank policy. We therefore extend the standard New Keynesian model to allow for positive trend inflation, showing that even low trend inflation has strong effects on optimal monetary policy and the dynamics of inflation, output, and interest rates. Under discretion, the efficient policy deteriorates and there is no guarantee of determinacy. Even with commitment, targeting non-zero trend inflation leads to substantial welfare losses. Our results serve as a warning against indiscriminate use of models assuming zero trend inflation.

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Paper provided by Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area in its series Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) with number 647.

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Date of creation: Nov 2007
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Handle: RePEc:bdi:wptemi:td_647_07
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  1. Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum & Charles L. Evans, 2005. "Nominal Rigidities and the Dynamic Effects of a Shock to Monetary Policy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(1), pages 1-45, February.
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  3. Guido Ascari, 2004. "Staggered Prices and Trend Inflation: Some Nuisances," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 7(3), pages 642-667, July.
  4. Stephanie Schmitt-Grohé & Martín Uribe, 2006. "Optimal Inflation Stabilization in a Medium-Scale Macroeconomic Model," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 410, Central Bank of Chile.
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  6. Schmitt-Grohé, Stephanie & Uribe, Martín, 2004. "Optimal Simple and Implementable Monetary and Fiscal Rules," CEPR Discussion Papers 4334, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  7. Marvin Goodfriend & Robert G. King, 2001. "The case for price stability," Working Paper 01-02, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond.
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  9. Richard Clarida & Jordi Gali & Mark Gertler, 1999. "The Science of Monetary Policy: A New Keynesian Perspective," NBER Working Papers 7147, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Robert Amano & Steve Ambler & Nooman Rebei, 2006. "The Macroeconomic Effects of Non-Zero Trend Inflation," Working Papers 06-34, Bank of Canada.
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  12. Caporale, Tony & McKiernan, Barbara, 1997. "High and variable inflation: Further evidence on the Friedman hypothesis," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 54(1), pages 65-68, January.
  13. Söderlind, Paul, 1998. "Solution and Estimation of RE Macromodels with Optimal Policy," SSE/EFI Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 256, Stockholm School of Economics.
  14. Hansen, Gary D., 1985. "Indivisible labor and the business cycle," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(3), pages 309-327, November.
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