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On the perils of stabilizing prices when agents are learning

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We show that price level stabilization is not optimal in an economy where agents have incomplete knowledge about the policy implemented and try to learn it. A systematically more accommodative policy than what agents expect generates short term gains without triggering an abrupt loss of confi dence, since agents update expectations sluggishly. In the long run agents learn the policy implemented, and the economy converges to a rational expectations equilibrium in which policy does not stabilize prices, economic volatility is high, and agents su ffer the corresponding welfare losses. However, these losses are outweighed by short term gains from the learning phase.

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  • Mele, Antonio & Molnar, Krisztina & Santoro, Sergio, 2014. "On the perils of stabilizing prices when agents are learning," Discussion Paper Series in Economics 1/2015, Norwegian School of Economics, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:nhheco:2015_001
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    Keywords

    Price level stabilization; expectations.;

    JEL classification:

    • C62 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling - - - Existence and Stability Conditions of Equilibrium
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness
    • D84 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Expectations; Speculations
    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy

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