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The advantage of flexible targeting rules

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  • Andrea Ferrero

Abstract

This paper investigates the consequences of debt stabilization for inflation targeting. If the monetary authority perfectly stabilizes inflation while the fiscal authority holds constant the real value of debt at maturity, the equilibrium dynamics might be indeterminate. However, determinacy can be restored by committing to targeting rules for either monetary or fiscal policy that include a concern for stabilization of the output gap. In solving the indeterminacy problem, flexible inflation targeting appears to be more robust than flexible debt targeting to alternative parameter configurations and steady-state fiscal stances. Conversely, flexible fiscal targeting rules lead to more desirable welfare outcomes. The paper further shows that if considerations beyond stabilization call for a combination of strict inflation and debt targeting rules, the indeterminacy result can be overturned if the fiscal authority commits to holding constant debt net of interest rate spending.

Suggested Citation

  • Andrea Ferrero, 2008. "The advantage of flexible targeting rules," Staff Reports 339, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fednsr:339
    Note: For a published version of this report, see Andrea Ferrero, "The Advantage of Flexible Targeting Rules," Journal of Money, Credit, and Banking 44, no. 5 (August 2012): 825-62.
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    1. Smales, Lee A. & Apergis, Nick, 2016. "The influence of FOMC member characteristics on the monetary policy decision-making process," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 64(C), pages 216-231.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    interaction of fiscal and monetary policy; equilibrium determinacy;

    JEL classification:

    • E61 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Policy Objectives; Policy Designs and Consistency; Policy Coordination
    • E63 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Comparative or Joint Analysis of Fiscal and Monetary Policy; Stabilization; Treasury Policy

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