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Does inflation targeting matter?

  • Laurence Ball
  • Niamh Sheridan

This paper asks whether inflation targeting improves economic performance, as measured by the behavior of inflation, output, and interest rates. We compare seven OECD countries that adopted inflation targeting in the early 1990s to thirteen that did not. After the early 90s, performance improved along many dimensions for both the targeting countries and the non-targeters. In some cases the targeters improved by more; for example, average inflation fell by a larger amount. However, these differences are explained by the facts that targeters performed worse than non-targeters before the early 90s, and there is regression to the mean. Once one controls for regression to the mean, there is no evidence that inflation targeting improves performance.

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Paper provided by Netherlands Central Bank in its series DNB Staff Reports (discontinued) with number 118.

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Date of creation: Jul 2004
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Handle: RePEc:dnb:staffs:118
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  1. Marc Zelmer & Andrea Schaechter, 2000. "Adopting Inflation Targeting: Practical Issues for Emerging Market Countries," IMF Occasional Papers 202, International Monetary Fund.
  2. Svensson, Lars E.O., 1997. "Inflation Forecast Targeting: Implementing and Monitoring Inflation Targets," Seminar Papers 615, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
  3. Laurence M. Ball, 1997. "Disinflation and the NAIRU," NBER Chapters, in: Reducing Inflation: Motivation and Strategy, pages 167-194 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Kuttner, Kenneth N. & Posen, Adam S., 1999. "Does talk matter after all? Inflation targeting and central bank behavior," CFS Working Paper Series 1999/04, Center for Financial Studies (CFS).
  5. Vittorio Corbo & Óscar Landerretche & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel, 2002. "Does Inflation Targeting Make a Difference?," Central Banking, Analysis, and Economic Policies Book Series, in: Norman Loayza & Raimundo Soto & Norman Loayza (Series Editor) & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel (Series Editor) (ed.), Inflation Targeting: Desing, Performance, Challenges, edition 1, volume 5, chapter 5, pages 221-270 Central Bank of Chile.
  6. Frederic S. Mishkin, 2002. "Does inflation targeting matter? - commentary," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Jul, pages 149-154.
  7. Frederic S. Mishkin & Adam S. Posen, 1997. "Inflation targeting: lessons from four countries," Economic Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, issue Aug, pages 9-110.
  8. Neumann, Manfred J. M. & von Hagen, Jürgen, 2002. "Does inflation targeting matter?," ZEI Working Papers B 01-2002, ZEI - Center for European Integration Studies, University of Bonn.
  9. Mishkin, Frederic S., 1998. "International Experiences With Different Monetary Policy Regimes," Seminar Papers 648, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
  10. Ball, Laurence, 1999. "Efficient Rules for Monetary Policy," International Finance, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 2(1), pages 63-83, April.
  11. Johnson, David R., 2002. "The effect of inflation targeting on the behavior of expected inflation: evidence from an 11 country panel," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(8), pages 1521-1538, November.
  12. Layard, Richard & Nickell, Stephen & Jackman, Richard, 2005. "Unemployment: Macroeconomic Performance and the Labour Market," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199279173.
  13. Chorng-Huey Wong & Eric V. Clifton & H. L. Leon, 2001. "Inflation Targeting and the Unemployment-Inflation Trade-off," IMF Working Papers 01/166, International Monetary Fund.
  14. Stephen G. Cecchetti & Michael Ehrmann, 1999. "Does Inflation Targeting Increase Output Volatility? An International Comparison of Policymakers' Preferences and Outcomes," NBER Working Papers 7426, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Svensson, Lars E O, 1995. "The Swedish Experience of an Inflation Target," CEPR Discussion Papers 1103, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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