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To Cut or Not to Cut? That is the (Central Bank’s) Question In Search of the Neutral Interest Rate in Latin America

  • Nicolas E. Magud
  • Evridiki Tsounta
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    This paper estimates neutral real interest rate (NRIR) ranges for 10 Latin American countries that either have full-fledged inflation targeting regimes in place or have recently adopted them, using an array of methodologies commonly used in the literature. We find that NRIRs have declined in the last decade, with more economically and financially developed economies exhibiting lower NRIR levels. Based on the estimated NRIRs, we assess that the current monetary stance (measured by the interest rate gap) is appropriately neutral in most of the considered economies, in line with closing output gaps. We also observe that the interest rate gap can be a good predictor of future inflation dynamics and economic growth. In addition, looking at the recent experiences in Brazil and Peru, we suggest that macro-prudential policies could affect the monetary stance even in the absence of direct interest rate changes, through affecting the NRIR.

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    Paper provided by International Monetary Fund in its series IMF Working Papers with number 12/243.

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    Length: 48
    Date of creation: 09 Oct 2012
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:12/243
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    5. Andrés González & Sergio Ocampo & Julian Pérez Amaya & Diego Rodríguez, 2012. "Output gap and Neutral interest measures for Colombia," Borradores de Economia 726, Banco de la Republica de Colombia.
    6. Alberto Humala & Gabriel Rodríguez, 2011. "Estimation Of A Time Varying Natural Interest Rate For Peru," Documentos de Trabajo / Working Papers 2011-316, Departamento de Economía - Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú.
    7. Jean-Paul Lam, 2004. "Estimating Policy-Neutral Interest Rates for Canada Using a Dynamic Stochastic General-Equilibrium Framework," Working Papers 04-9, Bank of Canada.
    8. Robert J. Barro & Xavier Sala-i-Martin, 2003. "Economic Growth, 2nd Edition," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 2, volume 1, number 0262025531, June.
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    13. Renzo Rossini & Zenon Quispe & Donita Rodriguez, 2011. "Capital flows, monetary policy and forex intervention in Peru," BIS Papers chapters, in: Bank for International Settlements (ed.), Capital flows, commodity price movements and foreign exchange intervention, volume 57, pages 261-274 Bank for International Settlements.
    14. Alex Segura-Ubiergo, 2012. "The Puzzle of Brazil's High Interest Rates," IMF Working Papers 12/62, International Monetary Fund.
    15. Andrés, Javier & David López-Salido, J. & Nelson, Edward, 2009. "Money and the natural rate of interest: Structural estimates for the United States and the euro area," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 33(3), pages 758-776, March.
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    18. Giammarioli, Nicola & Valla, Natacha, 2004. "The natural real interest rate and monetary policy: a review," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 26(5), pages 641-660, July.
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    21. Eliana González & Luis F. Melo & Luis E. Rojas & Brayan Rojas, 2011. "Estimations of the Natural Rate of Interest in Colombia," Money Affairs, Centro de Estudios Monetarios Latinoamericanos, vol. 0(1), pages 33-75, January-J.
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