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Une estimation de la cible implicite d’inflation dans la zone euro

  • Fève, P.
  • Matheron, J.
  • Sahuc, J-G.

Euro area countries as a whole have experienced a marked downward trend over the 1980s. Over this period, the unemployment rate has increased and economic activity has been sluggish. Changes in the implicit inflation target, viewed as low frequency movements of inflation, might possibly explain these developments. To highlight this issue, the present study estimates the dynamics of the implicit inflation target in the euro zone over the period 1970Q1-2004Q4. Based on a small macroeconometric model, the implicit target, not known by the econometrician, is identified through a minimal set of theoretical restrictions: (i) the inflation target is a non stationary process, (ii) inflation is a monetary phenomenon in the long-run, and (iii) changes in the implicit target have no long-run effects whatsoever on real variables. The model is estimated so as to match output growth, changes in inflation and the ex post real interest rate. Our main results are: (i) inflation target shocks account for the bulk of nominal fluctuations; (ii) due to monetary policy inertia and nominal stickiness, changes in the target generate large swings in the real interest rate translating into substantial short-run effects on real variables; (ii) in spite of this inflation target shocks moderately impact on output dynamics.

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Paper provided by Banque de France in its series Working papers with number 246.

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Length: 19 pages
Date of creation: 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:bfr:banfra:246
Contact details of provider: Postal: Banque de France 31 Rue Croix des Petits Champs LABOLOG - 49-1404 75049 PARIS
Web page: http://www.banque-france.fr/

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  1. Lucas, Robert Jr, 1976. "Econometric policy evaluation: A critique," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 19-46, January.
  2. Erceg, Christopher J. & Levin, Andrew T., 2003. "Imperfect credibility and inflation persistence," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(4), pages 915-944, May.
  3. Yongsung Chang & Taeyoung Doh & Frank Schorfheide, 2007. "Non-stationary Hours in a DSGE Model," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 39(6), pages 1357-1373, 09.
  4. Svensson, Lars E.O. & Rudebusch , Glenn, 1998. "Policy Rules for Inflation Targeting," Seminar Papers 637, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
  5. Gerlach, Stefan & Smets, Frank, 1999. "Output gaps and monetary policy in the EMU area1," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 43(4-6), pages 801-812, April.
  6. V. V. Chari & Patrick J. Kehoe & Ellen R. McGrattan, 2007. "Are structural VARs with long-run restrictions useful in developing business cycle theory?," Staff Report 364, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  7. Peter N. Ireland, 2006. "Changes in the Federal Reserve's Inflation Target: Causes and Consequences," NBER Working Papers 12492, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Fagan, Gabriel & Henry, Jerome & Mestre, Ricardo, 2005. "An area-wide model for the euro area," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 39-59, January.
  9. Cecchetti, Stephen G & Rich, Robert W, 2001. "Structural Estimates of the U.S. Sacrifice Ratio," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 19(4), pages 416-27, October.
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