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Inflation-targeting, price-path targeting and indeterminacy


  • Robert Dittmar
  • William T. Gavin


In this paper, we examine the areas of indeterminacy in a flexible price RBC model with shopping time role for money and a central bank that uses an interest rate rule to target inflation and/or the price level. We present analytical results showing that, although inflation targeting often results in real indeterminacy, a price level target generally delivers a unique equilibrium for a relevant range of policy parameters.

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  • Robert Dittmar & William T. Gavin, 2004. "Inflation-targeting, price-path targeting and indeterminacy," Working Papers 2004-007, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedlwp:2004-007

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Benhabib, Jess & Farmer, Roger E.A., 1999. "Indeterminacy and sunspots in macroeconomics," Handbook of Macroeconomics,in: J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Macroeconomics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 6, pages 387-448 Elsevier.
    2. Carlstrom, Charles T. & Fuerst, Timothy S., 2001. "Timing and real indeterminacy in monetary models," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(2), pages 285-298, April.
    3. Jess Benhabib & Stephanie Schmitt-Grohe & Martin Uribe, 2003. "Backward-looking interest-rate rules, interest-rate smoothing, and macroeconomic instability," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, pages 1379-1423.
    4. McCallum, Bennett T., 1986. "Some issues concerning interest rate pegging, price level determinacy, and the real bills doctrine," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(1), pages 135-160, January.
    5. 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.
    6. McCallum, Bennett T., 1981. "Price level determinacy with an interest rate policy rule and rational expectations," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 319-329.
    7. Robert D. Dittmar & William T. Gavin & Finn E. Kydland, 2005. "Inflation Persistence And Flexible Prices," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 46(1), pages 245-261, February.
    8. McCallum, Bennett T., 2003. "Multiple-solution indeterminacies in monetary policy analysis," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(5), pages 1153-1175, July.
    9. Marc P. Giannoni, 2010. "Optimal Interest-Rate Rules in a Forward-Looking Model, and Inflation Stabilization versus Price-Level Stabilization," NBER Working Papers 15986, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. 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 241-254, April.
    11. Woodford, Michael, 2003. "Comment on: Multiple-solution indeterminacies in monetary policy analysis," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(5), pages 1177-1188, July.
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    Cited by:

    1. Guender, Alfred V. & Oh, Do Yoon, 2006. "Price stability through price-level targeting or inflation targeting? A tale of two experiments," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 58(5-6), pages 373-391.
    2. Sofía Bauducco & Rodrigo Caputo, 2013. "Wicksell Versus Taylor: A Quest for Determinancy and the (IR) Relevance of the Taylor Principle," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 705, Central Bank of Chile.
    3. Dib, Ali & Mendicino, Caterina & Zhang, Yahong, 2013. "Price-level targeting rules and financial shocks: The case of Canada," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 30(C), pages 941-953.
    4. Oleksiy Kryvtsov & Malik Shukayev & Alexander Ueberfeldt, 2007. "Optimal Monetary Policy and Price Stability Over the Long-Run," Staff Working Papers 07-26, Bank of Canada.
    5. Bordo Michael D. & Dittmar Robert D & Gavin William T., 2007. "Gold, Fiat Money, and Price Stability," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 7(1), pages 1-31, August.
    6. Stephen G. Cecchetti & Stefan Krause, 2007. "Inflation Targeting versus Price-Path Targeting: Looking for Improvements," Central Banking, Analysis, and Economic Policies Book Series,in: Frederic S. Miskin & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel & Norman Loayza (Series Editor) & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel (Se (ed.), Monetary Policy under Inflation Targeting, edition 1, volume 11, chapter 8, pages 265-290 Central Bank of Chile.
    7. Eagle, David, 2007. "Revealing the naked truth behind price determinacy, infinite-horizon rational expectations, and inflation targeting," MPRA Paper 1538, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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    Monetary policy ; Equilibrium (Economics);

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