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Price Subsidies and the Conduct of Monetary Policy

  • Nooman Rebei
  • Mohamed Safouane Ben Aissa

This paper investigates optimized monetary policy rules in the presence of government intervention to stabilize prices of certain categories of goods and services. The paper estimates a small-scale, structural equilibrium model with a sticky-price sector and a subsidized price sector for a large number of countries using Bayesian methods. The main result of this paper is that strict headline inflation targeting could be outperformed by sectoral inflation targeting, output gap stabilization, or a combination of these. In addition, several country cases exhibit lower performance of both headline and core inflation stabilization, the two most common policies in modern central banks' practices. For practical monetary policy design, we numerically identify country specific thresholds for the degree of government intervention in price setting under which core inflation targeting turns out to be the optimal choice in the context of implementable Taylor rules.

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Paper provided by International Monetary Fund in its series IMF Working Papers with number 12/15.

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Length: 43
Date of creation: 01 Jan 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:12/15
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  1. Michele Boldrin & Lawrence J. Christiano & Jonas D.M. Fisher, 1999. "Habit persistence, asset returns and the business cycles," Working Paper Series WP-99-14, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  2. Backus, David K. & Crucini, Mario J., 2000. "Oil prices and the terms of trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(1), pages 185-213, February.
  3. Kevin X. D. Huang & Zheng Liu, 2003. "Inflation Targeting: What Inflation Rate to Target?," Emory Economics 0318, Department of Economics, Emory University (Atlanta).
  4. Jordi Gali & Mark Gertler, 2000. "Inflation Dynamics: A Structural Econometric Analysis," NBER Working Papers 7551, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Kim, Jinill & Kim, Sunghyun Henry, 2003. "Spurious welfare reversals in international business cycle models," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 471-500, August.
  6. Andrew Levin & Christopher J. Erceg & Dale W. Henderson, 1999. "Optimal Monetary Policy with Staggered Wage and Price Contracts," Computing in Economics and Finance 1999 1151, Society for Computational Economics.
  7. Rotemberg, Julio J, 1982. "Monopolistic Price Adjustment and Aggregate Output," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 49(4), pages 517-31, October.
  8. Kim, Jinill & Ruge-Murcia, Francisco J., 2007. "How Much Inflation is Necessary to Grease the Wheels?," Cahiers de recherche 2007-10, Universite de Montreal, Departement de sciences economiques.
  9. Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum & Charles L. Evans, 2005. "Nominal Rigidities and the Dynamic Effects of a Shock to Monetary Policy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(1), pages 1-45, February.
  10. Stephanie Schmitt-Grohe & Martin Uribe, 2001. "Solving Dynamic General Equilibrium Models Using a Second-Order Approximation to the Policy Function," Departmental Working Papers 200106, Rutgers University, Department of Economics.
  11. Schmitt-Grohé, Stephanie & Uribe, Martín, 2004. "Optimal Simple and Implementable Monetary and Fiscal Rules," CEPR Discussion Papers 4334, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  12. Aoki, Kosuke, 2001. "Optimal monetary policy responses to relative-price changes," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 55-80, August.
  13. Basu, Susanto, 1995. "Intermediate Goods and Business Cycles: Implications for Productivity and Welfare," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(3), pages 512-31, June.
  14. Tack Yun, 2005. "Optimal Monetary Policy with Relative Price Distortions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(1), pages 89-109, March.
  15. Frederic S. Mishkin & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel, 2006. "Monetary Policy Under Inflation Targeting: An Introduction," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 396, Central Bank of Chile.
  16. Rania Al Mashat & Andreas Billmeier, 2008. "The Monetary Transmission Mechanism in Egypt," Working Papers 411, Economic Research Forum, revised Jun 2008.
  17. John Geweke, 1998. "Using simulation methods for Bayesian econometric models: inference, development, and communication," Staff Report 249, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  18. Mark Bils & Peter J. Klenow, 2002. "Some Evidence on the Importance of Sticky Prices," NBER Working Papers 9069, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Gali, Jordi, 1994. "Government size and macroeconomic stability," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 38(1), pages 117-132, January.
  20. Frank Smets & Raf Wouters, 2003. "An Estimated Dynamic Stochastic General Equilibrium Model of the Euro Area," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 1(5), pages 1123-1175, 09.
  21. Martin Bodenstein & Christopher J. Erceg & Luca Guerrieri, 2008. "Optimal monetary policy with distinct core and headline inflation rates," International Finance Discussion Papers 941, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  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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