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A model for the federal funds rate target

Author

Listed:
  • Oscar Jorda
  • James D. Hamilton

    (Department of Economics, University of California Davis)

Abstract

This paper is a statistical analysis of the manner in which the Federal Reserve determines the level of the Federal funds rate target, one of the most publicized and anticipated economic indicators in the financial world. The analysis presents two econometric challenges: (1) changes in the target are irregularly spaced in time; (2) the target is changed in discrete increments of 25 basis points. The contributions of this paper are: (1) to give a detailed account of the changing role of the target in the conduct of monetary policy; (2) to develop new econometric tools for analyzing time-series duration data; (3) to analyze empirically the determinants of the target. The paper introduces a new class of models termed autoregressive conditional hazard processes, which allow one to produce dynamic forecasts of the probability of a target change. Conditional on a target change, an ordered probit model produces predictions on the magnitude by which the Fed will raise or lower the Federal funds rate. By decomposing Federal funds rate innovations into target changes and nonchanges, we arrive at new estimates of the effects of a monetary policy ""shock"".

Suggested Citation

  • Oscar Jorda & James D. Hamilton, 2003. "A model for the federal funds rate target," Working Papers 176, University of California, Davis, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:cda:wpaper:176
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C22 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Time-Series Models; Dynamic Quantile Regressions; Dynamic Treatment Effect Models; Diffusion Processes
    • C25 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Discrete Regression and Qualitative Choice Models; Discrete Regressors; Proportions; Probabilities
    • C41 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods: Special Topics - - - Duration Analysis; Optimal Timing Strategies

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