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Do Central Banks have Precautionary Demands for Expansions and for Price Stability? - Theory and Evidence

  • Alex Cukierman
  • V. Anton Muscatelli

This paper analyses the impact of asymmetric preferences with respect to inflation and output by policymakers on interest-rate reaction functions and test for their existence. A modified New Keynesian framework which makes it possible to identify the dominant type of asymmetry is developed and related to the precautionary demand of policymakers for expansions and for low inflation. Using data for four G7 economies, the paper shows that, except for Germany, nonlinear and asymmetric behaviour is present. A main finding, for the US, is that after credibility-building and disinflation have been established, the monetary authority develops a greater precautionary demand for output expansions than for low inflation. This may generate a new type of inflation bias. Conversely, where, as is the case in the UK, credibility-building is still a concern for the authorities, managing the business cycle is dominated by concerns of the monetary authorities to keep inflation expectations low.

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File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/portal/page/portal/DocBase_Content/WP/WP-CESifo_Working_Papers/wp-cesifo-2002/wp-cesifo-2002-08/764.pdf
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Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 764.

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Date of creation: 2002
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Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_764
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  1. Anton Muscatelli & Patrzio Tirelli & Carmine Trecroci, 1998. "Does Institutional Change Really Matter? Inflation Targets, Central Bank Reform And Interest Rate Policy In The Oecd Countries," Working Papers 1999_20, Business School - Economics, University of Glasgow, revised Jul 1999.
  2. Barro, Robert J & Gordon, David B, 1983. "A Positive Theory of Monetary Policy in a Natural Rate Model," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 91(4), pages 589-610, August.
  3. Hansen, Lars Peter, 1982. "Large Sample Properties of Generalized Method of Moments Estimators," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(4), pages 1029-54, July.
  4. McCallum, Bennett T., 1997. "Crucial issues concerning central bank independence," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 99-112, June.
  5. Svensson, Lars E O, 1998. "Open-Economy Inflation Targeting," CEPR Discussion Papers 1989, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Kahneman, Daniel & Tversky, Amos, 1979. "Prospect Theory: An Analysis of Decision under Risk," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(2), pages 263-91, March.
  7. Rudebusch, Glenn D & Svensson, Lars E O, 1998. "Policy Rules for Inflation Targeting," CEPR Discussion Papers 1999, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Gali, Jordi & Gertler, Mark & Lopez-Salido, J. David, 2001. "European inflation dynamics," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(7), pages 1237-1270.
  9. Alex Cukierman, 2002. "Are contemporary central banks transparent about economic models and objectives and what difference does it make?," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Jul, pages 15-36.
  10. Nicoletta Batini & Andrew Haldane, 1999. "Forward-Looking Rules for Monetary Policy," NBER Chapters, in: Monetary Policy Rules, pages 157-202 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Ruge-Murcia, Francisco J., 2004. "The inflation bias when the central bank targets the natural rate of unemployment," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 91-107, February.
  12. George A. Akerlof & William T. Dickens & George L. Perry, 2000. "Near-Rational Wage and Price Setting and the Long-Run Phillips Curve," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 31(1), pages 1-60.
  13. Richard Clarida & Jordi Gali & Mark Gertler, 1997. "Monetary Policy Rules in Practice: Some International Evidence," NBER Working Papers 6254, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Richard Clarida & Jordi Gali & Mark Gertler, 1998. "Monetary Policy Rules and Macroeconomic Stability: Evidence and Some Theory," NBER Working Papers 6442, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Dolado, Juan J. & María-Dolores, Ramón & Naveira Barrero, Manuel, 2000. "Asymmetries In Monetary Policy Rules: Evidence For Four Central Banks," CEPR Discussion Papers 2441, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  16. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1977. "Rules Rather Than Discretion: The Inconsistency of Optimal Plans," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 473-91, June.
  17. A. Robert Nobay & David A. Peel, 1998. "Optimal Monetary Policy in a Model of Asymmetric Central Bank Preferences," FMG Discussion Papers dp306, Financial Markets Group.
  18. Willem H. Buiter, 1999. "Alice in Euroland," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 20226, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  19. Clarida, R. & Gali, J. & Gertler, M., 1999. "The Science of Monetary Policy: A New Keynesian Perspective," Working Papers 99-13, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  20. Miles S. Kimball, 1989. "Precautionary Saving in the Small and in the Large," NBER Working Papers 2848, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  21. Calvo, Guillermo A., 1983. "Staggered prices in a utility-maximizing framework," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 383-398, September.
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