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Uncertainty and UK Monetary Policy

  • Christopher Martin


  • Costas Milas


This paper provides empirical evidence on the response of monetary policymakers to uncertainty. Using data for the UK since the introduction of inflation targets in October 1992, we find that the impact of inflation on interest rates is lower when inflation is more uncertain and is larger when the output gap is more uncertain. These findings are consistent with the predictions of the theoretical literature. We also find that uncertainty has reduced the volatility but has not affected the average value of interest rates and argue that monetary policy would have been less passive in the absence of uncertainty.

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Paper provided by Economics and Finance Section, School of Social Sciences, Brunel University in its series Public Policy Discussion Papers with number 04-11.

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Length: 20 pages
Date of creation: Jul 2004
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:bru:bruppp:04-11
Contact details of provider: Postal: Brunel University, Uxbridge, Middlesex UB8 3PH, UK

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  1. Martin, Christopher & Costas Milas, 2002. "Modelling Monetary Policy: Inflation Targeting in Practice," Royal Economic Society Annual Conference 2002 137, Royal Economic Society.
  2. DOLADO, J.J. & MARIA-DOLORES, R. & RUGE-MURCIA, Francisco J., 2003. "Nonlinear Monetary Policy Rules: Some New Evidence for the U.S," Cahiers de recherche 2003-24, Universite de Montreal, Departement de sciences economiques.
  3. Ben Martin & Chris Salmon, 1999. "Should uncertain monetary policy-makers do less?," Bank of England working papers 99, Bank of England.
  4. Lawrence J. Christiano & Terry J. Fitzgerald, 2003. "The Band Pass Filter," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 44(2), pages 435-465, 05.
  5. Hodrick, Robert J & Prescott, Edward C, 1997. "Postwar U.S. Business Cycles: An Empirical Investigation," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 29(1), pages 1-16, February.
  6. Edward Nelson, 2000. "UK monetary policy 1972-97: a guide using Taylor rules," Bank of England working papers 120, Bank of England.
  7. Söderström, Ulf, 2000. "Monetary policy with uncertain parameters," Working Paper Series 0013, European Central Bank.
  8. Jansen, Eilev S & Terasvirta, Timo, 1996. "Testing Parameter Constancy and Super Exogeneity in Econometric Equations," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 58(4), pages 735-63, November.
  9. Pagan, Adrian, 1984. "Econometric Issues in the Analysis of Regressions with Generated Regressors," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 25(1), pages 221-47, February.
  10. Orphanides, Athanasios & Wieland, Volker, 2000. "Inflation zone targeting," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 44(7), pages 1351-1387, June.
  11. Bennett T. McCallum, 1999. "Recent developments in the analysis of monetary policy rules," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Nov, pages 3-12.
  12. Rudebusch, Glenn D., 2002. "Term structure evidence on interest rate smoothing and monetary policy inertia," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(6), pages 1161-1187, September.
  13. Carl E. Walsh, 2003. "Implications of a changing economic structure for the strategy of monetary policy," Proceedings - Economic Policy Symposium - Jackson Hole, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, pages 297-348.
  14. Eitrheim, Oyvind & Terasvirta, Timo, 1996. "Testing the adequacy of smooth transition autoregressive models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 74(1), pages 59-75, September.
  15. Castelnuovo, Efrem, 2003. "Taylor rules, omitted variables, and interest rate smoothing in the US," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 81(1), pages 55-59, October.
  16. Pagan, Adrian & Ullah, Aman, 1988. "The Econometric Analysis of Models with Risk Terms," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 3(2), pages 87-105, April.
  17. Lin, Chien-Fu Jeff & Terasvirta, Timo, 1994. "Testing the constancy of regression parameters against continuous structural change," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 62(2), pages 211-228, June.
  18. repec:cup:macdyn:v:8:y:2004:i:1:p:27-50 is not listed on IDEAS
  19. Malcolm D. Knight & Chair, 2003. "Implications of a changing economic structure for the strategy of monetary policy," Proceedings - Economic Policy Symposium - Jackson Hole, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, pages 361-371.
  20. Swanson, Eric T., 2004. "Signal Extraction And Non-Certainty-Equivalence In Optimal Monetary Policy Rules," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 8(01), pages 27-50, February.
  21. Glenn D. Rudebusch, 1999. "Is the Fed too timid? Monetary policy in an uncertain world," Working Papers in Applied Economic Theory 99-05, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  22. Taylor, John B., 1993. "Discretion versus policy rules in practice," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 195-214, December.
  23. Peersman, Gert & Smets, Frank, 1999. "The Taylor Rule: A Useful Monetary Policy Benchmark for the Euro Area?," International Finance, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 2(1), pages 85-116, April.
  24. Gabriel Srour, 2003. "Some Notes on Monetary Policy Rules with Uncertainty," Working Papers 03-16, Bank of Canada.
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