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Interactions of Commitment and Discretion in Monetary and Fiscal Policies

  • Avinash Dixit

    ()

    (Princeton University)

  • Luisa Lambertini

    ()

    (Boston College)

We consider monetary-fiscal interactions when the monetary authority is more conservative than the fiscal. With both policies discretionary, (1) Nash equilibrium yields lower output and higher price than the ideal points of both authorities, (2) of the two leadership possibilities, fiscal leadership is generally better. With fiscal discretion, monetary commitment yields the same outcome as discretionary monetary leadership for all realizations of shocks. But fiscal commitment is not similarly negated by monetary discretion. Second-best outcomes require either joint commitment, or identical targets for both authorities -- output socially optimal and price level appropriately conservative -- or complete separation of tasks.

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Paper provided by Boston College Department of Economics in its series Boston College Working Papers in Economics with number 575.

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Length: 28 pages
Date of creation: 05 Jun 2003
Date of revision:
Publication status: forthcoming, American Economic Review, December 2003
Handle: RePEc:boc:bocoec:575
Contact details of provider: Postal: Boston College, 140 Commonwealth Avenue, Chestnut Hill MA 02467 USA
Phone: 617-552-3670
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Web page: http://fmwww.bc.edu/EC/
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  1. Beetsma, R.M.W.J. & Bovenberg, A.L., 1995. "Monetary Union without Fiscal Coordination May Discipline Policymakers," DELTA Working Papers 95-22, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
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  8. Svensson, L.E.O., 1995. "Optimal Inflation Targets, 'Conservative' Central Banks, and Linear Inflation Contracts," Papers 595, Stockholm - International Economic Studies.
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  11. Walsh, Carl E, 1995. "Optimal Contracts for Central Bankers," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(1), pages 150-67, March.
  12. Rogoff, Kenneth, 1985. "The Optimal Degree of Commitment to an Intermediate Monetary Target," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 100(4), pages 1169-89, November.
  13. Dixit, Avinash & Lambertini, Luisa, 2001. "Monetary-fiscal policy interactions and commitment versus discretion in a monetary union," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(4-6), pages 977-987, May.
  14. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1977. "Rules Rather Than Discretion: The Inconsistency of Optimal Plans," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 473-91, June.
  15. Dixit, Avinash & Lambertini, Luisa, 2003. "Symbiosis of monetary and fiscal policies in a monetary union," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 235-247, August.
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