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Real indeterminacy and the timing of money in open economies


  • Stephen McKnight

    () (El Colegio de México)


Should central banks target producer price inflation or consumer price inflation in the setting of monetary policy? Previous studies suggest that in order to avoid real indeterminacy and self-fulfilling fluctuations, the interest rate rule for open economies should react to producer price inflation. However, as this paper shows, the preference towards a particular inflation index crucially depends upon the timing assumption on money employed in the determinacy analysis. This timing assumption importantly determines the transactions-facilitating services of money. It is shown that the conclusions of the existing literature, that advocate targeting producer price inflation, is a by-product of adopting end-of-period timing, i.e. what matters for transactions purposes is the money one leaves the goods market with. However, we find that the conditions for equilibrium determinacy change significantly once cash-in-advance timing is adopted, i.e. what matters for current transactions is the money one enters the goods market with. Thus in stark contrast to previous studies, we show that under cash-in-advance timing, targeting consumer price inflation is preferable to targeting producer price inflation in preventing self-fulfilling expectations.

Suggested Citation

  • Stephen McKnight, 2011. "Real indeterminacy and the timing of money in open economies," Serie documentos de trabajo del Centro de Estudios Económicos 2011-01, El Colegio de México, Centro de Estudios Económicos.
  • Handle: RePEc:emx:ceedoc:2011-01

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Nicoletta Batini & Paul Levine & Joseph Pearlman, 2003. "Indeterminacy with inflation-forecast-cased rules in a two-bloc model," Proceedings, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    2. Carlstrom, Charles T. & Fuerst, Timothy S., 2001. "Timing and real indeterminacy in monetary models," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(2), pages 285-298, April.
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    4. Richard Clarida & Jordi Galí & Mark Gertler, 2000. "Monetary Policy Rules and Macroeconomic Stability: Evidence and Some Theory," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 115(1), pages 147-180.
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    8. Ben S. Bernanke & Michael Woodford, 1997. "Inflation forecasts and monetary policy," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, pages 653-686.
    9. Luis-Felipe Zanna, 2003. "Interest rate rules and multiple equilibria in the small open economy," International Finance Discussion Papers 785, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    10. Calvo, Guillermo A., 1983. "Staggered prices in a utility-maximizing framework," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 383-398, September.
    11. William Kerr & Robert G. King, 1996. "Limits on interest rate rules in the IS model," Economic Quarterly, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, issue Spr, pages 47-75.
    12. Carlstrom, Charles T. & Fuerst, Timothy S., 2005. "Investment and interest rate policy: a discrete time analysis," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 123(1), pages 4-20, July.
    13. Kollmann, Robert, 2003. "Monetary Policy Rules in an Interdependent World," CEPR Discussion Papers 4012, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    14. Charles T. Carlstrom & Timothy S. Fuerst, 2000. "Forward-looking versus backward-looking Taylor rules," Working Paper 0009, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
    15. De Fiore, Fiorella & Liu, Zheng, 2005. "Does trade openness matter for aggregate instability?," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 29(7), pages 1165-1192, July.
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    Cited by:

    1. Stephen McKnight & Alexander Mihailov, 2015. "Do Real Balance Effects Invalidate the Taylor Principle in Closed and Open Economies?," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 82(328), pages 938-975, October.
    2. Fujisaki, Seiya, 2013. "Taylor rules and equilibrium determinacy in a two-country model with non-traded goods," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 35(C), pages 597-603.
    3. Stephen McKnight, 2011. "Investment and interest rate policy in the open economy," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 63(4), pages 673-699, December.
    4. Fujisaki, Seiya, 2012. "Interest Rate Control Rules and Macroeconomic Stability in a Heterogeneous Two-Country Model," MPRA Paper 37017, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. repec:rdg:wpaper:em-dp2007-52 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Fujisaki, Seiya, 2012. "Taylor rules and equilibrium determinacy in a two-country model with non-traded goods," MPRA Paper 40023, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. Stephen McKnight, 2007. "Investment and Interest Rate Policy in the Open Economy," Economic Analysis Research Group Working Papers earg-wp2007-11, Henley Business School, Reading University.
    8. Stephen McKnight & Alexander Mihailov, 2007. "Re-examining the Importance of Trade Openness for Aggregate Instability," Economic Analysis Research Group Working Papers earg-wp2007-12, Henley Business School, Reading University.

    More about this item


    real indeterminacy; open economy monetary models; trade openness; interest rate rules;

    JEL classification:

    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • E43 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Interest Rates: Determination, Term Structure, and Effects
    • E53 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Deposit Insurance
    • E58 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Central Banks and Their Policies
    • F41 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - Open Economy Macroeconomics

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