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Welfare-maximizing monetary policy under parameter uncertainty

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  • Rochelle M. Edge
  • Thomas Laubach
  • John C. Williams

Abstract

This paper examines welfare-maximizing monetary policy in an estimated micro-founded general equilibrium model of the U.S. economy where the policymaker faces uncertainty about model parameters. Uncertainty about parameters describing preferences and technology implies not only uncertainty about the dynamics of the economy. It also implies uncertainty about the model's utility-based welfare criterion and about the economy's natural rate measures of interest and output. We analyze the characteristics and performance of alternative monetary policy rules given the estimated uncertainty regarding parameter estimates. We find that the natural rates of interest and output are imprecisely estimated. We then show that, relative to the case of known parameters, optimal policy under parameter uncertainty responds less to natural-rate terms and more to other variables, such as price and wage inflation and measures of tightness or slack that do not depend on natural rates.

Suggested Citation

  • Rochelle M. Edge & Thomas Laubach & John C. Williams, 2007. "Welfare-maximizing monetary policy under parameter uncertainty," Working Paper Series 2007-11, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedfwp:2007-11
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    Cited by:

    1. Anthony Diercks, 2016. "The Equity Premium, Long-Run Risk, and Optimal Monetary Policy," 2016 Meeting Papers 207, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    2. Taylor, John B. & Williams, John C., 2010. "Simple and Robust Rules for Monetary Policy," Handbook of Monetary Economics,in: Benjamin M. Friedman & Michael Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Monetary Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 15, pages 829-859 Elsevier.
    3. Avouyi-Dovi, Sanvi & Sahuc, Jean-Guillaume, 2011. "On the welfare costs of misspecified monetary policy objectives," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 151-161, June.
    4. Rochelle M. Edge & Thomas Laubach & John C. Williams, 2010. "Welfare-maximizing monetary policy under parameter uncertainty," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 25(1), pages 129-143.
    5. Özer Karagedikli & Troy Matheson & Christie Smith & Shaun P. Vahey, 2010. "RBCs AND DSGEs: THE COMPUTATIONAL APPROACH TO BUSINESS CYCLE THEORY AND EVIDENCE," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 24(1), pages 113-136, February.
    6. Pei-Tha Gan, 2014. "The Optimal Economic Uncertainty Index: A Grid Search Application," Computational Economics, Springer;Society for Computational Economics, vol. 43(2), pages 159-182, February.
    7. Paez-Farrell, Juan, 2014. "Resuscitating the ad hoc loss function for monetary policy analysis," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 123(3), pages 313-317.
    8. Sala, Luca & Söderström, Ulf & Trigari, Antonella, 2008. "Monetary policy under uncertainty in an estimated model with labor market frictions," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(5), pages 983-1006, July.
    9. Williams, John C., 2013. "A defense of moderation in monetary policy," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 38(PB), pages 137-150.
    10. Diercks, Anthony M., 2015. "The Equity Premium, Long-Run Risk, & Optimal Monetary Policy," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2015-87, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (US).
    11. André P. Calmon & Thomas Vallée & João B. R. Do Val, 2009. "Monetary policy as a source of uncertainty," Working Papers hal-00422454, HAL.
    12. Yibai Yang, 2018. "On the Optimality of IPR Protection with Blocking Patents," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 27, pages 205-230, January.
    13. Carl Walsh, 2007. "Inflation Targeting and the Role of Real Objectives," Research and Policy Notes 2007/02, Czech National Bank, Research Department.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Monetary policy;

    JEL classification:

    • E5 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit

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