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Cyclical Risk Aversion, Precautionary Saving and Monetary Policy

  • Bianca De Paoli
  • Pawel Zabczyk

This paper analyzes the conduct of monetary policy in an environment in which cyclical swings in risk appetite affect households' propensity to save. It uses a New-Keynesian model featuring external habit formation to show that taking note of precautionary saving motives justifies an accommodative policy bias in the face of persistent, adverse disturbances. Equally, policy should be more restrictive - i.e. `lean against the wind' - following positive shocks. Since the size of these `risk-adjustments' is increasing in the degree of macroeconomic volatility, ignoring this channel could lead to larger policy errors in turbulent times - with good luck translating into good policy.

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Paper provided by Centre for Economic Performance, LSE in its series CEP Discussion Papers with number dp1132.

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Date of creation: Mar 2012
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Handle: RePEc:cep:cepdps:dp1132
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  1. Juillard, Michel & Karam, Philippe & Laxton, Douglas & Pesenti, Paolo, 2006. "Welfare-based monetary policy rules in an estimated DSGE model of the US economy," Working Paper Series 0613, European Central Bank.
  2. Martin Møller Andreasen, 2008. "Explaining Macroeconomic and Term Structure Dynamics Jointly in a Non-linear DSGE Model," CREATES Research Papers 2008-43, School of Economics and Management, University of Aarhus.
  3. Jesus Fernandez-Villaverde & Juan F. Rubio-Ramirez, 2004. "Estimating Dynamic Equilibrium Economies: Linear versus Nonlinear Likelihood," PIER Working Paper Archive 04-005, Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania.
  4. Huggett, Mark & Ospina, Sandra, 2001. "Aggregate precautionary savings: when is the third derivative irrelevant?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(2), pages 373-396, October.
  5. Cochrane, John H. & Campbell, John, 1999. "By Force of Habit: A Consumption-Based Explanation of Aggregate Stock Market Behavior," Scholarly Articles 3119444, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  6. Pierpaolo Benigno & Michael Woodford, 2005. "Inflation Stabilization And Welfare: The Case Of A Distorted Steady State," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 3(6), pages 1185-1236, December.
  7. Hördahl, Peter & Tristani, Oreste & Vestin, David, 2007. "The yield curve and macroeconomic dynamics," Working Paper Series 0832, European Central Bank.
  8. De Paoli, Bianca & Zabczyk, Pawel, 2009. "Why do risk premia vary over time? A theoretical investigation under habit formation," Bank of England working papers 361, Bank of England.
  9. Ravenna , Federico & Seppälä , Juha, 2006. "Monetary policy and rejections of the expectations hypothesis," Research Discussion Papers 25/2006, Bank of Finland.
  10. Martin Floden, 2008. "Aggregate Savings When Individual Income Varies," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 11(1), pages 70-82, January.
  11. Sydney C. Ludvigson & Alexander Michaelides, 2001. "Does Buffer-Stock Saving Explain the Smoothness and Excess Sensitivity of Consumption?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(3), pages 631-647, June.
  12. Rudebusch, Glenn D. & Swanson, Eric T., 2008. "Examining the bond premium puzzle with a DSGE model," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(Supplemen), pages S111-S126, October.
  13. Mark Kazarosian, 1993. "Precautionary Savings- A Panel Study," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 247, Boston College Department of Economics.
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