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Determinacy, learnability, and monetary policy inertia

  • James Bullard
  • Kaushik Mitra

We document that monetary policy inertia can help alleviate problems of indeterminacy and non-existence of stationary equilibrium observed for some commonly-studied monetary policy rules. We also find that inertia promotes learnability of equilibrium. The context is a simple, forward-looking model of the macroeconomy widely used in the rapidly expanding literature in this area. We conclude that this might be an important reason why central banks in the industrialized economies display considerable inertia when adjusting monetary policy in response to changing economic conditions.

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Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis in its series Working Papers with number 2000-030.

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Date of creation: 2003
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedlwp:2000-030
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  1. Woodford, Michael, 1999. "Optimal Monetary Policy Inertia," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 67(0), pages 1-35, Supplemen.
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  10. James Bullard & Kaushik Mitra, 2002. "Learning about monetary policy rules," Working Papers 2000-001, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
  11. Richard Clarida & Jordi Galí & Mark Gertler, 2000. "Monetary Policy Rules And Macroeconomic Stability: Evidence And Some Theory," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 115(1), pages 147-180, February.
  12. Glenn D. Rudebusch, 1995. "Federal Reserve interest rate targeting, rational expectations, and the term structure," Working Papers in Applied Economic Theory 95-02, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  13. Roger E. A. Farmer, 1999. "Macroeconomics of Self-fulfilling Prophecies, 2nd Edition," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 2, volume 1, number 0262062038, June.
  14. Caplin, Andrew & Leahy, John, 1996. "Monetary Policy as a Process of Search," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(4), pages 689-702, September.
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  16. Robert E. Hall & N. Gregory Mankiw, 1994. "Nominal Income Targeting," NBER Chapters, in: Monetary Policy, pages 71-94 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Fuhrer, Jeffrey C & Moore, George R, 1995. "Monetary Policy Trade-offs and the Correlation between Nominal Interest Rates and Real Output," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(1), pages 219-39, March.
  18. Marcet, Albert & Sargent, Thomas J, 1989. "Convergence of Least-Squares Learning in Environments with Hidden State Variables and Private Information," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(6), pages 1306-22, December.
  19. Bennett T. McCallum, 1981. "On Non-Uniqueness in Rational Expectations Models: An Attempt at Perspective," NBER Working Papers 0684, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Richard Clarida & Jordi Galí & Mark Gertler, 1997. "The science of monetary policy: A new Keynesian perspective," Economics Working Papers 356, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Apr 1999.
  21. McCallum, Bennett T., 1999. "Issues in the design of monetary policy rules," Handbook of Macroeconomics, in: J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Macroeconomics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 23, pages 1483-1530 Elsevier.
  22. Sargent, Thomas J & Wallace, Neil, 1975. ""Rational" Expectations, the Optimal Monetary Instrument, and the Optimal Money Supply Rule," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 83(2), pages 241-54, April.
  23. Marcet, Albert & Sargent, Thomas J., 1989. "Convergence of least squares learning mechanisms in self-referential linear stochastic models," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 48(2), pages 337-368, August.
  24. Farmer, Roger E A, 1991. "The Lucas Critique, Policy Invariance and Multiple Equilibria," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 58(2), pages 321-32, April.
  25. Taylor, John B., 1993. "Discretion versus policy rules in practice," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 195-214, December.
  26. Evans, George W. & Honkapohja, Seppo, 1999. "Learning dynamics," Handbook of Macroeconomics, in: J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Macroeconomics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 7, pages 449-542 Elsevier.
  27. Charles T. Carlstrom & Timothy S. Fuerst, 2000. "Forward-looking versus backward-looking Taylor rules," Working Paper 0009, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
  28. McCallum, Bennett T., 1993. "Discretion versus policy rules in practice: two critical points : A comment," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 215-220, December.
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