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Heterogeneous Information about the Term Structure of Interest Rates, Least-Squares Learning and Optimal Interest Rate Rules for Inflation Forecast Targeting

  • Mewael Tesfaselassie
  • Eric Schaling
  • Sylvester Eijffinger

In this paper we incorporate the term structure of interest rates in a standard inflation forecast targeting framework. Learning about the transmission process of monetary policy is introduced by having heterogeneous agents - i.e. the central bank and private agents - who have different information sets about the future sequence of short-term interest rates. We analyse inflation forecast targeting in two environments. One in which the central bank has perfect knowledge, in the sense that it understands and observes the process by which private sector interest rate expectations are generated, and one in which the central bank has imperfect knowledge and has to learn the private sector forecasting rule for short-term interest rates. In the case of imperfect knowledge, the central bank has to learn about private sector interest rate expectations, as the latter affect the impact of monetary policy through the expectations theory of the term structure of interest rates. Here following Evans and Honkapohja (2001), the learning scheme we investigate is that of least-squares learning (recursive OLS) using the Kalman filter. We find that optimal monetary policy under learning is a policy that separates estimation and control. Therefore, this model suggests that the practical relevance of the breakdown of the separation principle and the need for experimentation in policy may be limited

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Paper provided by Econometric Society in its series Econometric Society 2004 North American Summer Meetings with number 78.

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Date of creation: 11 Aug 2004
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Handle: RePEc:ecm:nasm04:78
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  1. Schaling, Eric, 2003. "Learning, inflation expectations and optimal monetary policy," Research Discussion Papers 20/2003, Bank of Finland.
  2. 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.
  3. Rudebusch, Glenn D & Svensson, Lars E O, 2000. "Eurosystem Monetary Targeting: Lessons from US Data," CEPR Discussion Papers 2522, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. James B. Bullard & Eric Schaling, 2001. "New economy-new policy rules," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue May, pages 57-66.
  5. Robert J. Shiller & John Y. Campbell & Kermit L. Schoenholtz, 1983. "Forward Rates and Future Policy: Interpreting the Term Structure of Interest Rates," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 667, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  6. James B. Bullard, 1991. "Learning, rational expectations and policy: a summary of recent research," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Jan, pages 50-60.
  7. Athanasios Orphanides & John C. Williams, 2003. "Imperfect Knowledge, Inflation Expectations, and Monetary Policy," NBER Working Papers 9884, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Volker Wieland, 1999. "Monetary policy, parameter uncertainty and optimal learning," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 1999-48, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  9. Boyan Jovanovic & Yaw Nyarko, 1994. "Learning By Doing and the Choice of Technology," NBER Working Papers 4739, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Kiefer, Nicholas M & Nyarko, Yaw, 1989. "Optimal Control of an Unknown Linear Process with Learning," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 30(3), pages 571-86, August.
  11. Kaushik Mitra, . "Desirability of Nominal GDP Targeting Under Adaptive Learning," Discussion Papers 00/60, Department of Economics, University of York.
  12. Mark Rosenzweig & Andrew D. Foster, . "Learning by Doing and Learning from Others: Human Capital and Technical Change in Agriculture," Home Pages _068, University of Pennsylvania.
  13. Eric Schaling, 1999. "The non-linear Phillips curve and inflation forecast targeting," Bank of England working papers 98, Bank of England.
  14. Eijffinger, Sylvester C W & Schaling, Eric & Verhagen, Willem, 2000. "The Term Structure of Interest Rates and Inflation Forecast Targeting," CEPR Discussion Papers 2375, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  15. Beck, Gunter W. & Wieland, Volker, 2002. "Learning and control in a changing economic environment," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 26(9-10), pages 1359-1377, August.
  16. Fuhrer, Jeffrey C & Moore, George R, 1995. "Monetary Policy Trade-offs and the Correlation between Nominal Interest Rates and Real Output," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(1), pages 219-39, March.
  17. Sargent, Thomas J., 1993. "Bounded Rationality in Macroeconomics: The Arne Ryde Memorial Lectures," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198288695, March.
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