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Precautionary price stickiness

  • Costain, James
  • Nakov, Anton

This paper proposes two models in which price stickiness arises endogenously even though firms are free to change their prices at zero physical cost. Firms are subject to idiosyncratic and aggregate shocks, and they also face a risk of making errors when they set their prices. In our first specification, firms are assumed to play a dynamic logit equilibrium, which implies that big mistakes are less likely than small ones. The second specification derives logit behavior from an assumption that precision is costly. The empirical implications of the two versions of our model are very similar. Since firms making sufficiently large errors choose to adjust, both versions generate a strong "selection effect" in response to a nominal shock that eliminates most of the monetary nonneutrality found in the Calvo model. Thus the model implies that money shocks have little impact on the real economy, as in Golosov and Lucas (2007), but fits microdata better than their specification. JEL Classification: E31, D81, C72

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Paper provided by European Central Bank in its series Working Paper Series with number 1375.

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Date of creation: Aug 2011
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Handle: RePEc:ecb:ecbwps:20111375
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  1. Caplin, Andrew S & Spulber, Daniel F, 1987. "Menu Costs and the Neutrality of Money," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 102(4), pages 703-25, November.
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  8. Peter J. Klenow & Benjamin A. Malin, 2010. "Microeconomic Evidence on Price-Setting," NBER Working Papers 15826, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  14. Tutino, Antonella, 2008. "The rigidity of choice: lifetime savings under information-processing constraints," MPRA Paper 16744, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 24 Jul 2009.
  15. Kevin D. Sheedy, 2007. "Intrinsic Inflation Persistence," CEP Discussion Papers dp0837, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
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  18. Peter J. Klenow & Oleksiy Kryvtsov, 2007. "State-Dependent or Time-Dependent Pricing: Does It Matter for Recent U.S. Inflation?," Discussion Papers 07-007, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.
  19. Reiter, Michael, 2009. "Solving heterogeneous-agent models by projection and perturbation," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 33(3), pages 649-665, March.
  20. Álvarez, Luis J., 2007. "What Do Micro Price Data Tell Us on the Validity of the New Keynesian Phillips Curve?," Economics Discussion Papers 2007-46, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
  21. Etienne Gagnon, 2007. "Price setting during low and high inflation: evidence from Mexico," International Finance Discussion Papers 896, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  22. Maćkowiak, Bartosz & Wiederholt, Mirko, 2011. "Business cycle dynamics under rational inattention," Working Paper Series 1331, European Central Bank.
  23. Kevin D. Sheedy, 2007. "Inflation Persistence When Price Stickiness Differs Between Industries," CEP Discussion Papers dp0838, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  24. Mattsson, Lars-Goran & Weibull, Jorgen W., 2002. "Probabilistic choice and procedurally bounded rationality," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 41(1), pages 61-78, October.
  25. Leif Danziger, 1999. "A Dynamic Economy with Costly Price Adjustments," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(4), pages 878-901, September.
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