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The Great Inflation of the 1970s

Author

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  • Fabrice Collard
  • Harris Dellas

Abstract

Was the high inflation of the 1970s mostly due to incomplete information about the structure of the economy (an unavoidable mistake as suggested by Orphanides, 2000)? Or, to weak reaction to expected inflation and/or excessive policy activism that led to indeterminacies (a policy mistake, a scenario suggested by Clarida, Gali and Gertler, 2000)? We study this question within the NNS model with policy commitment and imperfect information, requiring that the model have satisfactory overall empirical performance. We find that both explanations do a good job in accounting for the great inflation. Even with the commonly used specification of the interest policy rule, high and persistent inflation can occur following a significant productivity slowdown if policymakers significantly and persistently underestimate \"core\" inflation.

Suggested Citation

  • Fabrice Collard & Harris Dellas, 2004. "The Great Inflation of the 1970s," International Finance Discussion Papers 799, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedgif:799
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    13. Orphanides, Athanasios, 2004. "Monetary Policy Rules, Macroeconomic Stability, and Inflation: A View from the Trenches," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 36(2), pages 151-175, April.
    14. Kevin J. Lansing, 2000. "Learning about a shift in trend output: implications for monetary policy and inflation," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
    15. Ireland, Peter N., 1999. "Does the time-consistency problem explain the behavior of inflation in the United States?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(2), pages 279-291, October.
    16. Cukierman, Alex & Lippi, Francesco, 2005. "Endogenous monetary policy with unobserved potential output," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 29(11), pages 1951-1983, November.
    17. Nelson, Edward & Nikolov, Kalin, 2004. "Monetary Policy and Stagflation in the UK," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 36(3), pages 293-318, June.
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    Cited by:

    1. Orphanides, Athanasios & Williams, John C., 2005. "The decline of activist stabilization policy: Natural rate misperceptions, learning, and expectations," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 29(11), pages 1927-1950, November.
    2. Fabrice Collard & Harris Dellas, 2008. "Monetary Policy and Inflation in the 70s," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 40(8), pages 1765-1781, December.
    3. Thomas Mayer & Gunther Schnabl, 2022. "Japan's Low Inflation Conundrum," CESifo Working Paper Series 9821, CESifo.
    4. Elmar Mertens, 2016. "Managing Beliefs about Monetary Policy under Discretion," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 48(4), pages 661-698, June.
    5. Marco Airaudo & Luca Bossi, 2017. "Consumption Externalities And Monetary Policy With Limited Asset Market Participation," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 55(1), pages 601-623, January.
    6. Sharon Kozicki & Peter A. Tinsley, 2005. "Perhaps the FOMC did what it said it did : an alternative interpretation of the Great Inflation," Research Working Paper RWP 05-04, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.
    7. Trunin, Pavel (Трунин, Павел) & Bozhechkova, Alexandra (Божечкова, Александра) & Goryunov, Eugene (Горюнов, Евгений) & Petrova, Diana, 2017. "Analysis of Approaches to Accounting of the Information Effects of Monetary Policy [Анализ Подходов К Учету Информационных Эффектов Денежно-Кредитной Политики]," Working Papers 031723, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration.
    8. repec:zbw:cfswop:wp200424 is not listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Inflation (Finance); economic conditions - United States;

    JEL classification:

    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy

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