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Uncertainty and Simple Monetary Policy Rules - An illustration for the United Kingdom

  • Simon Hall
  • Chris Salmon
  • Tony Yates
  • Nicoletta Batini

This paper reports an investigation of the effects of additive and multiplicative uncertainty upon the stabilisation properties of a simple base money rule for monetary policy. Using a five-equation empirical model of the United Kingdom, it is shown that changes in the extent of additive uncertainty have no effect on the 'optimal' degree of policy responsiveness to shocks to the economy. However, it is found that policy-makers should respond by less to shocks in the face of multiplicative uncertainty, and, as multiplicative uncertainty rises, so the optimal degree of policy reaction falls. This accords with Brainard's (1967) theoretical analysis and could be interpreted as justifying a gradualist monetary policy.

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Paper provided by Bank of England in its series Bank of England working papers with number 96.

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Date of creation: Jun 1999
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:boe:boeewp:96
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  1. Robert J. Barro & David B. Gordon, 1981. "A Positive Theory of Monetary Policy in a Natural-Rate Model," NBER Working Papers 0807, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  9. Norbert Janssen, 1998. "The demand for M0 in the United Kingdom reconsidered: some specification issues," Bank of England working papers 83, Bank of England.
  10. Wieland, Volker, 2003. "Monetary Policy and Uncertainty about the Natural Unemployment Rate," CEPR Discussion Papers 3811, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  13. Haldane, Andrew G & McCallum, Bennett T & Salmon, Chris, 1996. "Base Money Rules in the United Kingdom," The Manchester School of Economic & Social Studies, University of Manchester, vol. 64(0), pages 1-27, Suppl..
  14. Currie, David & Levine, Paul, 1985. "Simple Macropolicy Rules for the Open Economy," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 95(380a), pages 60-70, Supplemen.
  15. Lewis, Karen K, 1991. "Why Doesn't Society Minimize Central Bank Secrecy?," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 29(3), pages 403-15, July.
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  19. Cukierman, Alex & Meltzer, Allan H, 1986. "A Theory of Ambiguity, Credibility, and Inflation under Discretion and Asymmetric Information," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 54(5), pages 1099-1128, September.
  20. Taylor, John B, 1980. "Aggregate Dynamics and Staggered Contracts," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 88(1), pages 1-23, February.
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  22. Wieland, Volker, 2000. "Monetary policy, parameter uncertainty and optimal learning," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(1), pages 199-228, August.
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  24. Marcet, Albert & Sargent, Thomas J., 1989. "Convergence of least squares learning mechanisms in self-referential linear stochastic models," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 48(2), pages 337-368, August.
  25. Friedman, Benjamin M., 1990. "Targets and instruments of monetary policy," Handbook of Monetary Economics, in: B. M. Friedman & F. H. Hahn (ed.), Handbook of Monetary Economics, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 22, pages 1185-1230 Elsevier.
  26. Lucas, Robert Jr, 1976. "Econometric policy evaluation: A critique," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 19-46, January.
  27. Mccallum, Bennet T., 1988. "Robustness properties of a rule for monetary policy," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 173-203, January.
  28. Ben Martin & Chris Salmon, 1999. "Should uncertain monetary policy-makers do less?," Bank of England working papers 99, Bank of England.
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