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A Critical View of Inflation Targeting: Crises, Limited Sustainability, and Aggregate Shocks

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  • Michael Kumhof

Abstract

This paper presents a critical appraisal of inflation targeting as a monetary policy regime for emerging markets. It is shown that this policy, if understood as a strict commitment to a CPI inflation target, shares many features with exchange rate targeting and is quite different from flexible exchange rates under money growth rules. Inflation targets are vulnerable to speculative attacks, although less so than exchange rate targets. They perform worse than exchange rate targets when policy sustainability is limited. And their relative performance under exogenous shocks, not surprisingly, depends on the nature and direction of those shocks. Given this lack of an obvious advantage over exchange rate targets, the real attraction of inflation targets may be that they give the policymaker discretion. This, in the context of many emerging markets, has to be a cause for concern.

Suggested Citation

  • Michael Kumhof, 2001. "A Critical View of Inflation Targeting: Crises, Limited Sustainability, and Aggregate Shocks," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 127, Central Bank of Chile.
  • Handle: RePEc:chb:bcchwp:127
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Reginaldo P. Nogueira Jnr, 2006. "Inflation Targeting and the Role of Exchange Rate Pass-through," Studies in Economics 0602, School of Economics, University of Kent.
    2. Seedwell Hove & Albert Touna Mama & Fulbert Tchana Tchana, 2016. "Terms of Trade Shocks and Inflation Targeting in Emerging Market Economies," South African Journal of Economics, Economic Society of South Africa, vol. 84(1), pages 81-108, March.
    3. Roland Craigwell & Kevin Greenidge & Harold Codrington & Rupert D Worrell, 2003. "Economic Resilience with An Exchange Rate Peg; The Barbados Experience, 1985-2000," IMF Working Papers 03/168, International Monetary Fund.

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    JEL classification:

    • H4 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods
    • K39 - Law and Economics - - Other Substantive Areas of Law - - - Other
    • O31 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
    • O34 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Intellectual Property and Intellectual Capital

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