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Consumers' Attitudes and Their Inflation Expectations

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Abstract

This paper studies consumers' inflation expectations using micro-level data from the Surveys of Consumers conducted by University of Michigan. It shows that beyond the well-established socio-economic factors such as income, age or gender, other characteristics such as the households' financial situation and their purchasing attitudes are important determinants of their forecast accuracy. Respondents with current or expected financial difficulties, pessimistic attitudes about major purchases, or expectations that income will go down in the future have a stronger upward bias in their expectations than other households. However, their bias shrinks by more than that of the average household in response to increasing media reporting about inflation. Equivalent results are found during recessions.

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  • Michael Ehrmann & Damjan Pfajfar & Emiliano Santoro, 2015. "Consumers' Attitudes and Their Inflation Expectations," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2015-15, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedgfe:2015-15
    DOI: 10.17016/FEDS.2015.015
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    Cited by:

    1. Sitikantha Pattanaik & Silu Muduli & Soumyajit Ray, 2020. "Inflation expectations of households: do they influence wage-price dynamics in India?," Macroeconomics and Finance in Emerging Market Economies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 13(3), pages 244-263, September.
    2. Glenn Schepens, 2020. "Discussion of Berger, Irresberger, and Roman," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 52(S1), pages 193-195, October.
    3. Binder, Carola, 2017. "Consumer forecast revisions: Is information really so sticky?," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 161(C), pages 112-115.
    4. Lena Dräger & Michael J. Lamla & Damjan Pfajfar, 2020. "The Hidden Heterogeneity of Inflation Expectations and its Implications," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2020-054, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    5. Hjalmarsson, Erik & Österholm, Pär, 2020. "Heterogeneity in households’ expectations of housing prices – evidence from micro data," Journal of Housing Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(C).
    6. Duca, Ioana A. & Kenny, Geoff & Reuter, Andreas, 2018. "Inflation expectations, consumption and the lower bound: micro evidence from a large euro area survey," Working Paper Series 2196, European Central Bank.
    7. Stanisławska, Ewa & Paloviita, Maritta, 2021. "Medium- vs. short-term consumer inflation expectations : evidence from a new euro area survey," Research Discussion Papers 10/2021, Bank of Finland.
    8. Michael J. Lamla & Damjan Pfajfar & Lea Rendell, 2019. "Inflation and deflationary biases in inflation expectations," BIS Working Papers 789, Bank for International Settlements.
    9. Larsen, Vegard H. & Thorsrud, Leif Anders & Zhulanova, Julia, 2021. "News-driven inflation expectations and information rigidities," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 117(C), pages 507-520.
    10. Ashima Goyal & Prashant Mehul Parab, 2019. "Modeling Consumers' Confidence and Inflation Expectations," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 39(3), pages 1817-1832.
    11. Charles Bellemare & Rolande Kpekou Tossou & Kevin Moran, 2020. "The Determinants of Consumers' Inflation Expectations: Evidence from the US and Canada," Staff Working Papers 20-52, Bank of Canada.
    12. Coibion, Olivier & Gorodnichenko, Yuriy & Kumar, Saten & Pedemonte, Mathieu, 2020. "Inflation expectations as a policy tool?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 124(C).
    13. Abildgren, Kim & Kuchler, Andreas, 2021. "Revisiting the inflation perception conundrum," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 67(C).
    14. Ashima Goyal & Prashant Parab, 2019. "Modeling consumers' confidence and inflation expectations," Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai Working Papers 2019-025, Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai, India.
    15. David-Jan Jansen & Matthias Neuenkirch, 2017. "News Consumption, Political Preferences, and Accurate Views on Inflation," Research Papers in Economics 2017-03, University of Trier, Department of Economics.
    16. Berge, Travis J., 2018. "Understanding survey-based inflation expectations," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 34(4), pages 788-801.
    17. Raïsa Basselier & David de Antonio Liedo & Jana Jonckheere & Geert Langenus, 2018. "Can inflation expectations in business or consumer surveys improve inflation forecasts?," Working Paper Research 348, National Bank of Belgium.
    18. Carlos Medel, 2021. "Searching for the Best Inflation Forecasters within a Consumer Perceptions Survey: Microdata Evidence from Chile," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 899, Central Bank of Chile.
    19. Arifovic, Jasmina & Evans, George W. & Kostyshyna, Olena, 2020. "Are sunspots learnable? An experimental investigation in a simple macroeconomic model," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 110(C).
    20. Junichi Kikuchi & Yoshiyuki Nakazono, 2020. "The Formation of Inflation Expectations: Micro-data Evidence from Japan," Working Papers e144, Tokyo Center for Economic Research.
    21. Tura-Gawron, Karolina, 2019. "Consumers’ approach to the credibility of the inflation forecasts published by central banks: A new methodological solution," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 62(C).
    22. Ma, Chao, 2020. "Momentum and Reversion to Fundamentals: Are They Captured by Subjective Expectations of House Prices?," Journal of Housing Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(C).
    23. Ashima Goyal & Prashant Parab, 2019. "Modeling heterogeneity and rationality of inflation expectations across Indian households," Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai Working Papers 2019-02, Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai, India.
    24. Dräger, Lena & Lamla, Michael J. & Pfajfar, Damjan, 2020. "The Hidden Heterogeneity of Inflation and Interest Rate Expectations: The Role of Preferences," Hannover Economic Papers (HEP) dp-666, Leibniz Universität Hannover, Wirtschaftswissenschaftliche Fakultät, revised Jun 2021.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Consumer Attitudes; Inflation Expectations; News on Inflation;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C53 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling - - - Forecasting and Prediction Models; Simulation Methods
    • D84 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Expectations; Speculations
    • E31 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Price Level; Inflation; Deflation

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