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Robust Learning Stability with Operational Monetary Policy Rules

  • Evans, George W.
  • Honkapohja, Seppo

We consider "robust stability" of a rational expectations equilibrium, which we define as stability under discounted (constant gain) least-squares learning, for a range of gain parameters. We find that for operational forms of policy rules, i.e. rules that do not depend on contemporaneous values of endogenous aggregate variables, many interest-rate rules do not exhibit robust stability. We consider a variety of interest-rate rules, including instrument rules, optimal reaction functions under discretion or commitment, and rules that approximate optimal policy under commitment. For some reaction functions we allow for an interest-rate stabilization motive in the policy objective. The expectations-based rules proposed in Evans and Honkapohja (2003, 2006) deliver robust learning stability. In contrast, many proposed alternatives become unstable under learning even at small values of the gain parameter.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 6641.

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Date of creation: Jan 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:6641
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  1. George W. Evans & Seppo Honkapohja, 2003. "Expectations and the Stability Problem for Optimal Monetary Policies," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 70(4), pages 807-824, October.
  2. George W. Evans & Seppo Honkapohja, 2002. "Adaptive Learning and Monetary Policy Design," University of Oregon Economics Department Working Papers 2002-18, University of Oregon Economics Department, revised 04 Mar 2004.
  3. Bennett T. McCallum & Edward Nelson, 2004. "Timeless perspective vs. discretionary monetary policy in forward-looking models," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Mar, pages 43-56.
  4. Clarida, Richard & Galí, Jordi & Gertler, Mark, 1999. "The Science of Monetary Policy: A New Keynesian Perspective," CEPR Discussion Papers 2139, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Fabio Milani, 2005. "Adaptive Learning and Inflation Persistence," Working Papers 050607, University of California-Irvine, Department of Economics.
  6. George W. Evans & Seppo Honkapohja, 2009. "Learning and Macroeconomics," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 1(1), pages 421-451, 05.
  7. Bullard, James & Mitra, Kaushik, 2002. "Learning about monetary policy rules," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(6), pages 1105-1129, September.
  8. John Duffy & Wei Xiao, 2006. "The Value of Interest Rate Stabilization Policies When Agents are Learning," Working Papers 284, University of Pittsburgh, Department of Economics, revised Oct 2006.
  9. George W. Evans & Seppo Honkapohja & Noah Williams, 2005. "Generalized Stochastic Gradient Learning," NBER Technical Working Papers 0317, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Evans, George W. & Honkapohja, Seppo, 2002. "Monetary Policy, Expectations and Commitment," CEPR Discussion Papers 3434, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  11. Fabio Milani, 2005. "Expectations, Learning and Macroeconomic Persistence," Macroeconomics 0510022, EconWPA.
  12. Evans, George & Honkapohja, Seppo, 2008. "Expectations, Learning and Monetary Policy: An Overview of Recent Research," SIRE Discussion Papers 2008-03, Scottish Institute for Research in Economics (SIRE).
  13. McCallum, Bennett T., 1999. "Issues in the design of monetary policy rules," Handbook of Macroeconomics, in: J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Macroeconomics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 23, pages 1483-1530 Elsevier.
  14. repec:oup:restud:v:65:y:1998:i:1:p:23-44 is not listed on IDEAS
  15. Woodford, Michael, 2000. "Optimal Monetary Policy Inertia," Seminar Papers 666, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
  16. Orphanides, Athanasios & Williams, John C., 2003. "Imperfect knowledge, inflation expectations, and monetary policy," CFS Working Paper Series 2003/40, Center for Financial Studies (CFS).
  17. Sergey Slobodyan & Anna Bogomolova & Dmitri Kolyuzhnov, 2006. "Stochastic Gradient versus Recursive Least Squares Learning," Computing in Economics and Finance 2006 446, Society for Computational Economics.
  18. Branch, William A. & Evans, George W., 2006. "A simple recursive forecasting model," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 91(2), pages 158-166, May.
  19. Evans, G.W. & Guesnerie, R., 1992. "Rationalizability, Strong Rationality and Expectational Stability," DELTA Working Papers 92-03, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
  20. Milani, Fabio, 2014. "Learning and time-varying macroeconomic volatility," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 47(C), pages 94-114.
  21. James B. Bullard, 2006. "The learnability criterion and monetary policy," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue May, pages 203-217.
  22. M. H. Khalil Timamy, 2005. "Debate," Review of African Political Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 32(104-105), pages 383-393, June.
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