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Oil shocks and the zero bound on nominal interest rates

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Abstract

Beginning in 2009, in many advanced economies, policy rates reached their zero lower bound (ZLB). Almost at the same time, oil prices started rising again. We analyze how the ZLB affects the propagation of oil shocks. As these shocks move inflation and output in opposite directions, their effects on economic activity are cushioned when monetary policy is constrained. The burst of inflation from an oil price increase lowers real interest rates at the ZLB and stimulates the interest-sensitive component of GDP, offsetting the usual contractionary effects. In fact, if the increase in oil prices is gradual, the persistent rise in inflation can cause a GDP expansion.

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  • Martin Bodenstein & Luca Guerrieri & Christopher J. Gust, 2010. "Oil shocks and the zero bound on nominal interest rates," International Finance Discussion Papers 1009, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedgif:1009
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Petroleum products - Prices; Petroleum industry and trade;

    JEL classification:

    • F32 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Current Account Adjustment; Short-term Capital Movements
    • F41 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - Open Economy Macroeconomics

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