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Do Central Banks have Precautionary Demands for Expansions and for Price Stability?

  • Alex Cukierman
  • Anton Muscatelli

This paper analyses the impact of asymmetric preferences with respect to inflation and output by policymakers on interest-rate reaction functions. A theoretical framework which makes it possible to identify the dominant type of asymmetry is developed and related to the precautionary demand of pol- icymakers for expansions and for low inßation. Using data for some G7 economies, the paper shows that, except for Germany, nonlinear and asym- metric behaviour is present. A main Þnding is that where credibility-building and disinflation has already been achieved, the monetary authorities develop a greater precautionary demand for output expansions than for low inflation. This may generate a new type of inflation bias. Conversely, where credibility- building is still a concern for the authorities, managing the business cycle is dominated by concerns of the monetary authorities to keep inflation expec- tations low.

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Paper provided by Business School - Economics, University of Glasgow in its series Working Papers with number 2002_4.

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Date of creation: Jul 2001
Date of revision: Mar 2002
Handle: RePEc:gla:glaewp:2002_4
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  1. Nicoletta Batini & Andrew Haldane, 1999. "Forward-Looking Rules for Monetary Policy," NBER Chapters, in: Monetary Policy Rules, pages 157-202 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  3. Muscatelli, V Anton & Tirelli, Patrizio & Trecroci, Carmine, 2002. "Does Institutional Change Really Matter? Inflation Targets, Central Bank Reform and Interest Rate Policy in the OECD Countries," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 70(4), pages 487-527, Special I.
  4. Richard Clarida & Jordi Galí & Mark Gertler, 2000. "Monetary Policy Rules and Macroeconomic Stability: Evidence and Some Theory," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 115(1), pages 147-180.
  5. Alex Cukierman, 2002. "Are contemporary central banks transparent about economic models and objectives and what difference does it make?," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Jul, pages 15-36.
  6. Lars E.O. Svensson, 1995. "Optimal Inflation Targets, `Conservative' Central Banks, and Linear Inflation Contracts," NBER Working Papers 5251, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Glenn D. Rudebusch & Lars E. O. Svensson, 1998. "Policy rules for inflation targeting," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Mar.
  8. Clarida, Richard & Gali, Jordi & Gertler, Mark, 1997. "Monetary Policy Rules in Practice: Some International Evidence," Working Papers 97-32, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  9. Willem H. Buiter, 1999. "Alice in Euroland," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 20226, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  10. McCallum, Bennett T., 1997. "Crucial issues concerning central bank independence," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 99-112, June.
  11. Barro, Robert J & Gordon, David B, 1983. "A Positive Theory of Monetary Policy in a Natural Rate Model," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 91(4), pages 589-610, August.
  12. 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.
  13. Hansen, Lars Peter, 1982. "Large Sample Properties of Generalized Method of Moments Estimators," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(4), pages 1029-54, July.
  14. Richard Clarida & Jordi Gali & Mark Gertler, 1999. "The Science of Monetary Policy: A New Keynesian Perspective," NBER Working Papers 7147, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Miles S. Kimball, 1989. "Precautionary Saving in the Small and in the Large," NBER Working Papers 2848, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Ruge-Murcia, Francisco J., 2004. "The inflation bias when the central bank targets the natural rate of unemployment," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 91-107, February.
  17. Dolado, Juan J. & María-Dolores, Ramón & Naveira Barrero, Manuel, 2000. "Asymmetries In Monetary Policy Rules: Evidence For Four Central Banks," CEPR Discussion Papers 2441, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  18. Svensson, Lars E.O., 1998. "Open-Economy Inflation Targeting," Seminar Papers 638, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
  19. Cukierman, A., 1999. "The Inflation Bias Result Revisited," Papers 38-99, Tel Aviv.
  20. Alan S. Blinder, 1999. "Central Banking in Theory and Practice," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262522608, June.
  21. A. Robert Nobay & David A. Peel, 1998. "Optimal Monetary Policy in a Model of Asymmetric Central Bank Preferences," FMG Discussion Papers dp306, Financial Markets Group.
  22. Calvo, Guillermo A., 1983. "Staggered prices in a utility-maximizing framework," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 383-398, September.
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