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Commodity Prices and Inflation Expectations in the United States


  • Oya Celasun
  • Lev Ratnovski
  • Roxana Mihet


U.S. monetary policy can remain extraordinarily accommodative only if longer-term inflation expectations stay well-anchored, including in response to commodity price shocks. We find that oil price shocks have a statistically significant, but economically small impact on longer-term inflation compensation embedded in U.S. Treasury bonds. The estimated effect is larger for the post-crisis period, and robust to controlling for measures of liquidity risk premia. Oil price shocks are also correlated with the variance of longer-term inflation expectations in the University of Michigan Survey of Consumers in the post-crisis period. These results are not attributable to looser monetary policy - oil price increases were associated with expectations of a faster monetary tightening after the crisis. Overall, the findings are consistent with some impact of commodity prices on long-term inflation expectations and/or on inflation rate risk.

Suggested Citation

  • Oya Celasun & Lev Ratnovski & Roxana Mihet, 2012. "Commodity Prices and Inflation Expectations in the United States," IMF Working Papers 12/89, International Monetary Fund.
  • Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:12/89

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Lutz Kilian, 2008. "The Economic Effects of Energy Price Shocks," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 46(4), pages 871-909, December.
    2. Olivier Armantier & Wändi Bruine de Bruin & Giorgio Topa & Wilbert Klaauw & Basit Zafar, 2015. "Inflation Expectations And Behavior: Do Survey Respondents Act On Their Beliefs?," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 56, pages 505-536, May.
    3. Keith Sill, 2007. "The macroeconomics of oil shocks," Business Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, issue Q1, pages 21-31.
    4. Refet S. Gürkaynak & Brian Sack & Jonathan H. Wright, 2010. "The TIPS Yield Curve and Inflation Compensation," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 2(1), pages 70-92, January.
    5. Petra Gerlach & Peter Hördahl & Richhild Moessner, 2011. "Inflation expectations and the great recession," BIS Quarterly Review, Bank for International Settlements, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Pedersen, Michael, 2015. "What affects the predictions of private forecasters? The role of central bank forecasts in Chile," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 31(4), pages 1043-1055.
    2. Koehler-Geib,Fritzi & Hnatkovska,Viktoria, 2015. "Business cycles accounting for Paraguay," Policy Research Working Paper Series 7284, The World Bank.
    3. Robert G. Murphy & Adam Rohde, 2014. "Rational Bias in Inflation Expectations," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 857, Boston College Department of Economics, revised 25 Oct 2015.
    4. repec:eee:intfin:v:51:y:2017:i:c:p:133-141 is not listed on IDEAS


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