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Forward Guidance for Monetary Policy: Is It Desirable?

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Abstract

In this paper we assess whether forward guidance for monetary policy regarding the future path of interest rates is desirable. We distinguish between two cases where forward guidance for monetary policy may be helpful. First, forward guidance may reveal private information of the central bank. We argue that vague, non-binding statements may be desirable. Second, forward guidance may be used as a commitment device. In this case, policy forecasts may be desirable in a classic inflation-bias framework but not in a New Keynesian framework.

Suggested Citation

  • Hans Gersbach & Volker Hahn, 2008. "Forward Guidance for Monetary Policy: Is It Desirable?," CER-ETH Economics working paper series 08/84, CER-ETH - Center of Economic Research (CER-ETH) at ETH Zurich.
  • Handle: RePEc:eth:wpswif:08-84
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    File URL: https://www.ethz.ch/content/dam/ethz/special-interest/mtec/cer-eth/cer-eth-dam/documents/working-papers/wp_08_84.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    3. Orphanides, Athanasios & Wieland, Volker, 2000. "Efficient Monetary Policy Design near Price Stability," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 14(4), pages 327-365, December.
    4. Barro, Robert J. & Gordon, David B., 1983. "Rules, discretion and reputation in a model of monetary policy," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(1), pages 101-121.
    5. Hans Gersbach, 2003. "On the negative social value of central banks' knowledge transparency," Economics of Governance, Springer, vol. 4(2), pages 91-102, August.
    6. Mark Gertler & Jordi Gali & Richard Clarida, 1999. "The Science of Monetary Policy: A New Keynesian Perspective," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(4), pages 1661-1707, December.
    7. William Poole, 2003. "Fed transparency: how, not whether," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Nov, pages 1-8.
    8. Glenn D. Rudebusch & John C. Williams, 2008. "Revealing the Secrets of the Temple: The Value of Publishing Central Bank Interest Rate Projections," NBER Chapters,in: Asset Prices and Monetary Policy, pages 247-289 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Gersbach, Hans & Hahn, Volker, 2006. "Signaling And Commitment: Monetary Versus Inflation Targeting," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 10(05), pages 595-624, November.
    10. Xavier Gabaix, 2011. "The Granular Origins of Aggregate Fluctuations," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 79(3), pages 733-772, May.
    11. Hans Gersbach & Volker Hahn, 2011. "Monetary Policy Inclinations," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 43(8), pages 1707-1717, December.
    12. Joseph Farrell & Matthew Rabin, 1996. "Cheap Talk," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 10(3), pages 103-118, Summer.
    13. Petra M. Geraats, 2002. "Central Bank Transparency," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(483), pages 532-565, November.
    14. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1977. "Rules Rather Than Discretion: The Inconsistency of Optimal Plans," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 473-491, June.
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    Cited by:

    1. Balistreri, Edward J. & Hillberry, Russell H. & Rutherford, Thomas F., 2010. "Trade and welfare: Does industrial organization matter?," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 109(2), pages 85-87, November.
    2. Balistreri, Edward J. & Hillberry, Russell H. & Rutherford, Thomas F., 2011. "Structural estimation and solution of international trade models with heterogeneous firms," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(2), pages 95-108, March.
    3. Maria Lucia Florez-Jimenez & Julian A. Parra-Polania, 2016. "Forward guidance with an escape clause: when half a promise is better than a full one," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 48(15), pages 1372-1381, March.
    4. Kool, Clemens J. M. & Thornton, Daniel L., 2015. "How Effective Is Central Bank Forward Guidance?," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, vol. 97(4), pages 303-322.
    5. Daniel Laskar, 2010. "Imprecision of Central Bank Announcements and Credibility," PSE Working Papers halshs-00562595, HAL.
    6. Daniel Laskar, 2010. "Imprecision of Central Bank Announcements and Credibility," Working Papers halshs-00562595, HAL.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    central banks; transparency; commitment; Federal Reserve; policy inclinations; signaling;

    JEL classification:

    • E58 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Central Banks and Their Policies
    • D70 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - General

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