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When is Monetary Policy All we Need?

  • Leith, Campbell
  • Wren-Lewis, Simon

We consider optimal monetary and scal policies in a New Keynesian model of a small open economy with sticky prices and wages. In this benchmark setting monetary policy is all we need - analytical results demonstrate that variations in government spending should play no role in the stabilization of shocks. In extensions we show, rstly, that this is even when true when allowing for in ation inertia through backward-looking rule-of-thumb price and wage-setting, as long as there is no discrepancy between the private and social evaluation of the marginal rate of substitution between consumption and leisure. Secondly, the optimal neutrality of government spending is robust to the issuance of public debt. In the presence of debt government spending will deviate from the optimal steady-state but only to the extent required to cover the deficit, not to provide any additional macroeconomic stabilization. However, unlike government spending variations in tax rates can play a complementary role to monetary policy, as they change relative prices rather than demand.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10943/111
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Paper provided by Scottish Institute for Research in Economics (SIRE) in its series SIRE Discussion Papers with number 2009-25.

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Date of creation: 2009
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Handle: RePEc:edn:sirdps:111
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  1. Stehn, Sven Jari & Vines, David, 2008. "Strategic Interactions between an Independent Central Bank and a Myopic Government with Government Debt," CEPR Discussion Papers 6913, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Jordi Galí & Mark Gertler, 1998. "Inflation dynamics: A structural econometric analysis," Economics Working Papers 341, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
  3. Tatiana Kirsanova & Simon Wren-Lewis, 2007. "Optimal fiscal feedback on debt in an economy with nominal rigidities," FRB Atlanta Working Paper 2007-26, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
  4. Kevin D. Sheedy, 2007. "Robustly optimal monetary policy," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 3737, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  5. Leith, Campbell & Malley, Jim, 2005. "Estimated general equilibrium models for the evaluation of monetary policy in the US and Europe," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 49(8), pages 2137-2159, November.
  6. Jordi Galí & Tommaso Monacelli, 2003. "Monetary Policy and Exchange Rate Volatility in a Small Open Economy," Working Papers 11, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
  7. Jordi Galí & Tommaso Monacelli, 2005. "Optimal monetary and fiscal policy in a currency union," Economics Working Papers 909, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Feb 2008.
  8. Tatiana Kirsanova & Campbell Leith & Simon Wren-Lewis, 2006. "Should Central Banks Target Consumer Prices or the Exchange Rate?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 116(512), pages F208-F231, 06.
  9. Stephanie Schmitt-Grohe & Martin Uribe, 2001. "Optimal Fiscal and Monetary Policy Under Sticky Prices," Departmental Working Papers 200105, Rutgers University, Department of Economics.
  10. Leith, Campbell & Wren-Lewis, Simon, 2006. "Compatibility between monetary and fiscal policy under EMU," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 50(6), pages 1529-1556, August.
  11. Stephanie Schmitt-Grohe & Martin Uribe, 2004. "Optimal Simple and Implementable Monetary and Fiscal Rules," NBER Working Papers 10253, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Fabian Eser, 2009. "Optimal Fiscal Stabilisation through Government Spending," Economics Series Working Papers 2009-W14, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  13. Simon Wren-Lewis & Campbell Leith, 2007. "Fiscal Sustainability in a New Keynesian Model," Economics Series Working Papers 310, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  14. Morten Ravn & Stephanie Schmitt-Grohe & Martin Uribe, 2004. "Deep Habits," NBER Working Papers 10261, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Gianluca Benigno & Bianca De Paoli, 2009. "On the International Dimension of Fiscal Policy," CEP Discussion Papers dp0905, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  16. Erceg, Christopher J. & Henderson, Dale W. & Levin, Andrew T., 2000. "Optimal monetary policy with staggered wage and price contracts," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(2), pages 281-313, October.
  17. Tatiana Kirsanova & David Vines & Mathan Satchi & Simon Wren-Lewis, 2005. "Optimal Fiscal Policy Rules in a Monetary Union," Money Macro and Finance (MMF) Research Group Conference 2005 40, Money Macro and Finance Research Group.
  18. Jordi Galí, 2007. "Constant interest rate projections without the curse of indeterminacy," Economics Working Papers 1057, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Feb 2008.
  19. Stehn, Sven Jari & Vines, David, 2008. "Debt Stabilisation Bias and the Taylor Principle: Optimal Policy in a New Keynesian Model with Government Debt and Inflation Persistence," CEPR Discussion Papers 6696, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  20. Pontiggia, Dario, 2007. "Inflation persistence and optimal positive long-run inflation," MPRA Paper 3274, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  21. Jón Steinsson, 2000. "Optimal monetary policy in an economy with inflation persistence," Economics wp11, Department of Economics, Central bank of Iceland.
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