IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

UK Macroeconomic Volatility and the Welfare Costs of Inflation

  • Polito, Vito


    (Cardiff Business School)

  • Spencer, Peter

This paper explores the implications of time varying volatility for optimal monetary policy and the measurement of welfare costs. We show how macroeconomic models with linear and quadratic state dependence in their variance structure can be used for the analysis of optimal policy within the framework of an optimal linear regulator problem. We use this framework to study optimal monetary policy under inflation conditional volatility and Find that the quadratic component of the variance makes policy more responsive to inflation shocks in the same way that an increase in the welfare weight attached to inflation does, while the linear component reduces the steady state rate of inflation. Empirical results for the period 1979-2010 underline the statistical significance of inflation-dependent UK macroeconomic volatility. Analysis of the welfare losses associated with inflation and macroeconomic volatility shows that the conventional homoskedastic model seriously underestimates both the welfare costs of inflation and the potential gains from policy optimization.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by Cardiff University, Cardiff Business School, Economics Section in its series Cardiff Economics Working Papers with number E2011/23.

in new window

Length: 60 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cdf:wpaper:2011/23
Contact details of provider: Postal: Aberconway Building, Colum Drive, CARDIFF, CF10 3EU
Phone: +44 (0) 29 20874417
Fax: +44 (0) 29 20874419
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Ellison, Martin & Valla, Natacha, 2001. "Learning, uncertainty and central bank activism in an economy with strategic interactions," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 153-171, August.
  2. Fountas, Stilianos & Karanasos, Menelaos & Kim, Jinki, 2002. "Inflation and output growth uncertainty and their relationship with inflation and output growth," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 75(3), pages 293-301, May.
  3. Polito, Vito & Wickens, Michael R., 2008. "Optimal Monetary Policy using a VAR," CEPR Discussion Papers 6957, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Cogley, Timothy & De Paoli, Bianca & Matthes, Christian & Nikolov, Kalin & Yates, Tony, 2011. "A Bayesian approach to optimal monetary policy with parameter and model uncertainty," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 35(12), pages 2186-2212.
  5. Fabio Canova, 2007. "Bayesian Time Series and DSGE Models, from Methods for Applied Macroeconomic Research
    [Methods for Applied Macroeconomic Research]
    ," Introductory Chapters, Princeton University Press.
  6. Luca Gambetti & Evi Pappa & Fabio Canova, 2005. "The structural dynamics of US output and inflation: What explains the changes?," Economics Working Papers 921, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
  7. Dewachter, Hans & Lyrio, Marco, 2006. "Macro Factors and the Term Structure of Interest Rates," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 38(1), pages 119-140, February.
  8. Francesco Bianchi & Haroon Mumtaz, 2010. "Dynamics of the Term Structure of UK Interest Rates," Working Papers 10-38, Duke University, Department of Economics.
  9. Guglielmo Maria, Caporale & Alexandros , Kontonikas, 2007. "The Euro and Inflation Uncertainty in the European Monetary Union," CELPE Discussion Papers 101, CELPE - Centre of Labour Economics and Economic Policy, University of Salerno, Italy.
  10. Luca Benati, 2004. "Evolving post-World War II UK economic performance," Bank of England working papers 232, Bank of England.
  11. Fountas, Stilianos & Alexandra,Ioannidid, 2001. "Inflation, Inflation Uncertainty, and a Common European Monetary Policy," Working Papers 0054, National University of Ireland Galway, Department of Economics, revised 2001.
  12. Mumtaz, Haroon & Surico, Paolo, 2008. "Evolving International Inflation Dynamics: Evidence from a Time-varying Dynamic Factor Model," CEPR Discussion Papers 6767, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  13. Alejandro Justiniano & Giorgio E. Primiceri, 2008. "The Time-Varying Volatility of Macroeconomic Fluctuations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(3), pages 604-41, June.
  14. Fabio Canova, 2007. "DSGE Models, Solutions, and Approximations, from Methods for Applied Macroeconomic Research
    [Methods for Applied Macroeconomic Research]
    ," Introductory Chapters, Princeton University Press.
  15. Favero, Carlo A & Rovelli, Riccardo, 2003. " Macroeconomic Stability and the Preferences of the Fed: A Formal Analysis, 1961-98," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 35(4), pages 545-56, August.
  16. Grier, Kevin B. & Perry, Mark J., 1998. "On inflation and inflation uncertainty in the G7 countries," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 17(4), pages 671-689, August.
  17. Brunner, Allan D & Hess, Gregory D, 1993. "Are Higher Levels of Inflation Less Predictable? A State-Dependent Conditional Heteroscedasticity Approach," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 11(2), pages 187-97, April.
  18. Chan, K C, et al, 1992. " An Empirical Comparison of Alternative Models of the Short-Term Interest Rate," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 47(3), pages 1209-27, July.
  19. Blanchard, Olivier Jean & Kahn, Charles M, 1980. "The Solution of Linear Difference Models under Rational Expectations," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(5), pages 1305-11, July.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cdf:wpaper:2011/23. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Bruce Webb)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.