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Are Central Banks' Projections Meaningful?

  • Galí, Jordi

Central banks' projections--i.e. forecasts conditional on a given interest rate path-- are often criticized on the grounds that their underlying policy assumptions are inconsistent with the existence of a unique equilibrium in many forward-looking models. Here I describe three alternative approaches to constructing projections that are not subject to the above criticism, using two different versions of New Keynesian model as reference frameworks. Most importantly, I show how the three approaches generate different projections for inflation and output, even though they imply an identical path for the interest rate. The latter result calls into question the meaning and usefulness of such projections.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 8027.

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Date of creation: Sep 2010
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:8027
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  1. Kaushik Mitra & James Bullard, . "Learning About Monetary Policy Rules," Discussion Papers 00/41, Department of Economics, University of York.
  2. Leeper, Eric M. & Zha, Tao, 2003. "Modest policy interventions," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(8), pages 1673-1700, November.
  3. Robert G. King & Alexander L. Wolman, 1996. "Inflation targeting in a St. Louis model of the 21st century," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue May, pages 83-107.
  4. Benhabib, Jess & Schmitt-Grohe, Stephanie & Uribe, Martin, 1998. "The Perils of Taylor Rules," Working Papers 98-37, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  5. Honkapohja, Seppo & Mitra, Kaushik, 2005. "Performance of inflation targeting based on constant interest rate projections," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 29(11), pages 1867-1892, November.
  6. Frank Smets & Rafael Wouters, 2007. "Shocks and Frictions in US Business Cycles: A Bayesian DSGE Approach," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(3), pages 586-606, June.
  7. Blanchard, Olivier Jean & Kahn, Charles M, 1980. "The Solution of Linear Difference Models under Rational Expectations," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(5), pages 1305-11, July.
  8. Frank Smets & Rafael Wouters, 2005. "Bayesian New Neoclassical Synthesis (NNS) Models: Modern Tools for Central Banks," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 3(2-3), pages 422-433, 04/05.
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