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Liquidity Traps with Global Taylor Rules

  • Schmitt-Grohé, Stephanie
  • Uribe, Martín

A key result of a recent literature that focuses on the global consequences of Taylor-type interest rate feedback rules is that such rules, in combination with the zero-bound on nominal interest rates, can lead to unintended liquidity traps. An immediate question posed by this result is whether the government could avoid liquidity traps by ignoring the zero-bound, that is, by threatening to set the nominal interest rate at a negative value should the inflation rate fall below a certain threshold. This Paper shows that even if the government could credibly commit to setting the interest rate at a negative value, self-fulfilling liquidity traps can still emerge. That is, deflationary equilibria originating arbitrarily near the intended equilibrium and leading to low (possibly zero) interest rates and low (and possibly negative) rates of inflation cannot be ruled out by lifting the zero-bound on the monetary policy rule. This result obtains in models with flexible and sticky prices and under continuous and discrete time.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 2969.

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Date of creation: Sep 2001
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:2969
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  1. Stephanie Schmitt-Grohe & Martin Uribe, 1997. "Price level determinacy and monetary policy under a balanced-budget requirement," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 1997-17, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  2. Lucas, Robert E, Jr & Stokey, Nancy L, 1987. "Money and Interest in a Cash-in-Advance Economy," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(3), pages 491-513, May.
  3. Andrew Levin & Volker Wieland & John C. Williams, 1998. "Robustness of Simple Monetary Policy Rules under Model Uncertainty," NBER Working Papers 6570, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Jess Benhabib & Stephanie Schmitt-Grohe & Martin Uribe, 1998. "The perils of Taylor Rules," Departmental Working Papers 199831, Rutgers University, Department of Economics.
  5. Buiter, Willem H., 1999. "The Fallacy of the Fiscal Theory of the Price Level," CEPR Discussion Papers 2205, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  7. Benhabib, J. & Schmitt-Grohe, S. & Uribe, M., 1998. "Monetary Policy and Multiple Equilibria," Working Papers 98-02, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  8. Clarida, Richard & Gali, Jordi & Gertler, Mark, 1997. "Monetary Policy Rules in Practice: Some International Evidence," Working Papers 97-32, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  9. Dupor, Bill, 2001. "Investment and Interest Rate Policy," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 98(1), pages 85-113, May.
  10. Charles T. Carlstrom & Timothy S. Fuerst, 2001. "Real indeterminacy in monetary models with nominal interest rate distortions: the problem with inflation targets," Working Paper 9818R, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
  11. Michael Woodford, 2001. "Fiscal Requirements for Price Stability," NBER Working Papers 8072, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  13. Rotemberg, Julio J, 1982. "Sticky Prices in the United States," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 90(6), pages 1187-1211, December.
  14. Benhabib, J. & Schmitt-Grohe, S. & Uribe, M., 1999. "Avoiding Liquidity Traps," Working Papers 99-21, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  15. Michael Woodford, 1996. "Control of the Public Debt: A Requirement for Price Stability?," NBER Working Papers 5684, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Buiter, Willem H., 1998. "The Young Person's Guide to Neutrality, Price Level Indeterminacy, Interest Rate Pegs and Fiscal Theories of the Price Level," CEPR Discussion Papers 1799, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  17. Leeper, Eric M., 1991. "Equilibria under 'active' and 'passive' monetary and fiscal policies," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 129-147, February.
  18. Julio J. Rotemberg & Michael Woodford, 1998. "Interest-Rate Rules in an Estimated Sticky Price Model," NBER Working Papers 6618, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Brian Sack, 1998. "Uncertainty, learning, and gradual monetary policy," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 1998-34, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  20. Taylor, John B., 1993. "Discretion versus policy rules in practice," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 195-214, December.
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