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Stable price level and changing prices

  • Suvanto , Antti

    ()

    (Bank of Finland)

  • Hukkinen , Juhana

    ()

    (Bank of Finland)

The paper investigates the relationship between relative price movements and changes in the aggregate price level using monthly data on Finland’s Consumer Price Index and its components from the period covering the past eight and a half years. This was a period of very low inflation. The rate of growth in the aggregate price level was occasionally very close to zero. The paper shows that declining nominal prices were a rather common phenomenon during this period of low or no inflation. The declining prices cannot, however, be explained by lack of demand or any generalized deflationary tendencies. Hence, the downward rigidity of nominal prices has not prevented relative price adjustments under price stability. The paper develops a new method for looking at the composition of inflation and illustrating how relative price dynamics interact with changes in the aggregate price level. The correlation of relative price variability and aggregate inflation has been negligible, but the correlation between the skewness of price change distribution and aggregate inflation is high. This is in accordance with the predictions of the menu cost models. A significant proportion of the relative price changes appear to have been persistent, suggesting the dominance of productivity and other supply shocks.

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File URL: http://www.suomenpankki.fi/en/julkaisut/tutkimukset/keskustelualoitteet/Documents/0428.pdf
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Paper provided by Bank of Finland in its series Research Discussion Papers with number 28/2004.

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Length: 35 pages
Date of creation: 13 Oct 2004
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:hhs:bofrdp:2004_028
Contact details of provider: Postal: Bank of Finland, P.O. Box 160, FI-00101 Helsinki, Finland
Web page: http://www.suomenpankki.fi/en/

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  1. Tobin, James, 1972. "Inflation and Unemployment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 62(1), pages 1-18, March.
  2. Berthold Herrendorf & Arilton Teixeira, 2004. "Monopoly rights can reduce income big time," Macroeconomics 0404023, EconWPA.
  3. Maritta Paloviita, 2006. "Inflation Dynamics in the Euro Area and the Role of Expectations," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 31(4), pages 847-860, November.
  4. Hyytinen, Ari & Takalo, Tuomas, 2004. "Multihoming in the Market for Payment Media: Evidence from Young Finnish Consumers," Discussion Papers 893, The Research Institute of the Finnish Economy.
  5. Mayes , David G., 2004. "An approach to bank insolvency in transition and emerging economies," Research Discussion Papers 4/2004, Bank of Finland.
  6. Martin Ellison & Lucio Sarno & Jouko Vilmunen, 2004. "Monetary policy and learning in an open economy," Macroeconomics 0404022, EconWPA.
  7. Ball, Laurence & Mankiw, N. Gregory, 1999. "Interpreting the Correlation Between Inflation and the Skewness of Relative Prices: A Comment on Bryan and Cecchetti," Scholarly Articles 3415439, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  8. Allen Berger & Iftekhar Hasan & Leora Klapper, 2004. "Further Evidence on the Link between Finance and Growth: An International Analysis of Community Banking and Economic Performance," Journal of Financial Services Research, Springer, vol. 25(2), pages 169-202, April.
  9. Eran Guse, 2004. "Expectational Business Cycles," Money Macro and Finance (MMF) Research Group Conference 2004 97, Money Macro and Finance Research Group.
  10. Michael F. Bryan & Stephen G. Cecchetti, 1996. "Inflation and the Distribution of Price Changes," NBER Working Papers 5793, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Ball, L. & Mankiw, G.H., 1992. "Relative-Price Change as Aggregate Supply Shocks," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1609, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  12. Castrén, Olli & Takalo, Tuomas & Wood, Geoffrey, 2004. "Labour market reform and the sustainability of exchange rate pegs," Working Paper Series 0406, European Central Bank.
  13. Bagella, Michele & Becchetti, Leonardo & Hasan, Iftekhar, 2004. "The anticipated and concurring effects of the EMU: exchange rate volatility, institutions and growth," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 23(7-8), pages 1053-1080.
  14. Friedman, Milton, 1977. "Nobel Lecture: Inflation and Unemployment," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 451-72, June.
  15. Stephen G. Cecchetti & Erica L. Groshen, 2000. "Understanding Inflation: Implications for Monetary Policy," NBER Working Papers 7482, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Paloviita, Maritta & Mayes, David, 2005. "The use of real-time information in Phillips-curve relationships for the euro area," The North American Journal of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 16(3), pages 415-434, December.
  17. Schaling , Eric & Eijffinger , Sylvester & Tesfaselassie , Mewael, 2004. "Heterogeneous information about the term structure, least-squares learning and optimal rules for inflation targeting," Research Discussion Papers 23/2004, Bank of Finland.
  18. David G. Mayes & Matti Virén, 2004. "Asymmetries in the Euro area economy," Macroeconomics 0404024, EconWPA.
  19. Vining, Daniel R, Jr & Elwertowski, Thomas C, 1976. "The Relationship between Relative Prices and the General Price Level," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 66(4), pages 699-708, September.
  20. Domberger, Simon, 1987. "Relative Price Variability and Inflation: A Disaggregated Analysis," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(3), pages 547-66, June.
  21. Stanley Fischer, 1981. "Relative Shocks, Relative Price Variability, and Inflation," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 12(2), pages 381-442.
  22. George A. Akerlof & William R. Dickens & George L. Perry, 1996. "The Macroeconomics of Low Inflation," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 27(1), pages 1-76.
  23. Kauppi , Heikki & Koskela , Erkki & Stenbacka , Rune, 2004. "Equilibrium unemployment and investment under product and labour market imperfections," Research Discussion Papers 11/2004, Bank of Finland.
  24. Parsley, David C, 1996. "Inflation and Relative Price Variability in the Short and Long Run: New Evidence from the United States," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 28(3), pages 323-41, August.
  25. Randal J. Verbrugge, 1999. "Cross-Sectional Inflation Asymmetries And Core Inflation: A Comment On Bryan And Cecchetti," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 81(2), pages 199-202, May.
  26. Rautureau, Nicolas, 2004. "Measuring the long-term perception of monetary policy and the term structure," Research Discussion Papers 12/2004, Bank of Finland.
  27. Koskela , Erkki & Uusitalo , Roope, 2004. "Unintended convergence – how Finnish unemployment reached the European level," Research Discussion Papers 6/2004, Bank of Finland.
  28. Lucas, Robert E, Jr, 1973. "Some International Evidence on Output-Inflation Tradeoffs," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 63(3), pages 326-34, June.
  29. Jokivuolle , Esa & Lanne , Markku, 2004. "Trading Nokia: The roles of the Helsinki vs the New York stock exchanges," Research Discussion Papers 26/2004, Bank of Finland.
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