IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Inflation targeting: why it works and how to make it work better

  • William T. Gavin

Inflation targeting has worked so well because it leads policymakers to debate, decide on, and communicate the inflation objective. In practice, this process has led the public to believe that the central bank has a long-term inflation objective. Inflation targeting has been successful, then, because the central bank decides on an objective and announces it, not because of a change in its day-to-day behavior in money markets or the way it reacts to news about unemployment or real GDP. By deciding on an inflation rate and announcing it, the central bank is providing information the public needs to concentrate expectations on a common trend. The central bank gains control indirectly by creating information that makes it more likely that people will price things in a way that is consistent with the central bank's goal. The way to improve inflation targeting is to be more explicit about the average inflation rate expected over all relevant horizons. Building a target path for the price level, growing at the desired inflation rate, is the best way to institutionalize a low-inflation environment. In a wide variety of economic models, a price-path target mitigates the zero lower bound problem, eliminates worries about deflation, and improves the central bank's ability to stabilize the real economy.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL: http://research.stlouisfed.org/wp/2003/2003-027.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis in its series Working Papers with number 2003-027.

as
in new window

Length:
Date of creation: 2003
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in Business Economics, April 2004, 39(2), pp. 30-37
Handle: RePEc:fip:fedlwp:2003-027
Contact details of provider: Postal: P.O. Box 442, St. Louis, MO 63166
Fax: (314)444-8753
Web page: http://www.stlouisfed.org/

More information through EDIRC

Order Information: Email:


References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Robert Dittmar & William T. Gavin & Finn Kydland, 1999. "The inflation-output variability tradeoff and price-level targets," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Jan, pages 23-32.
  2. Nathan S. Balke & Kenneth M. Emery, 1991. "The algebra of price stability," Research Paper 9117, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.
  3. Robert J. Barro & David B. Gordon, 1981. "A Positive Theory of Monetary Policy in a Natural-Rate Model," NBER Working Papers 0807, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. James Clouse & Dale Henderson & Athanasios Orphanides & David Small & Peter Tinsley, 2000. "Monetary policy when the nominal short-term interest rate is zero," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2000-51, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  5. Bennett McCallum, . "Multiple-Solution Indeterminacies in Monetary Policy Analysis," GSIA Working Papers 2003-E77, Carnegie Mellon University, Tepper School of Business.
  6. Laurence Ball & N Gregory Mankiw & Ricardo Reis, 2003. "Monetary Policy for Inattentive Economies," Economics Working Paper Archive 491, The Johns Hopkins University,Department of Economics.
  7. Clarida, Richard & Galí, Jordi & Gertler, Mark, 1998. "Monetary Policy Rules and Macroeconomic Stability: Evidence and Some Theory," CEPR Discussion Papers 1908, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Reifschneider, David & Willams, John C, 2000. "Three Lessons for Monetary Policy in a Low-Inflation Era," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 32(4), pages 936-66, November.
  9. Kaushik Mitra & James Bullard, . "Learning About Monetary Policy Rules," Discussion Papers 00/41, Department of Economics, University of York.
  10. David Reifschneider & John C. Williams, 1999. "Three lessons for monetary policy in a low inflation era," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 1999-44, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  11. Benhabib, Jess & Schmitt-Grohé, Stephanie & Uribe, Martín, 1999. "The Perils of Taylor Rules," CEPR Discussion Papers 2314, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  12. Frederic S. Mishkin & Adam S. Posen, 1997. "Inflation targeting: lessons from four countries," Economic Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, issue Aug, pages 9-110.
  13. William T. Gavin, 2003. "FOMC forecast: is all the information in the central tendency?," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue May, pages 27-46.
  14. Charles T. Carlstrom & Timothy S. Fuerst, 2001. "Real Indeterminacy in Monetary Models with Nominal Interest Rate Distortions," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 4(4), pages 767-789, October.
  15. Vestin, David, 2000. "Price-level Targeting versus Inflation Targeting in a Forward-looking Model," Working Paper Series 106, Sveriges Riksbank (Central Bank of Sweden).
  16. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1977. "Rules Rather Than Discretion: The Inconsistency of Optimal Plans," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 473-91, June.
  17. Svensson, L-E-O, 1996. "Price Level Targeting vs Inflation Targeting : A free Lunch?," Papers 614, Stockholm - International Economic Studies.
  18. Nessen, Marianne & Vestin, David, 2005. "Average Inflation Targeting," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 37(5), pages 837-63, October.
  19. Mervyn King, 1999. "Challenges for monetary policy : new and old," Proceedings - Economic Policy Symposium - Jackson Hole, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, pages 11-57.
  20. Stephen G. Cecchetti & Junhan Kim, 2003. "Inflation Targeting, Price-Path Targeting and Output Variability," NBER Working Papers 9672, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:fip:fedlwp:2003-027. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Anna Xiao)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.