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Surprising Comparative Properties of Monetary Models: Results from a New Data Base

  • John B. Taylor
  • Volker Wieland

In this paper we investigate the comparative properties of empirically-estimated monetary models of the U.S. economy. We make use of a new data base of models designed for such investigations. We focus on three representative models: the Christiano, Eichenbaum, Evans (2005) model, the Smets and Wouters (2007) model, and the Taylor (1993a) model. Although the three models differ in terms of structure, estimation method, sample period, and data vintage, we find surprisingly similar economic impacts of unanticipated changes in the federal funds rate. However, the optimal monetary policy responses to other sources of economic fluctuations are widely different in the different models. We show that simple optimal policy rules that respond to the growth rate of output and smooth the interest rate are not robust. In contrast, policy rules with no interest rate smoothing and no response to the growth rate, as distinct from the level, of output are more robust. Robustness can be improved further by optimizing rules with respect to the average loss across the three models.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 14849.

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Date of creation: Apr 2009
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Publication status: published as August 2012, Vol. 94, No. 3, Pages 800-816 Posted Online July 19, 2011. (doi:10.1162/REST_a_00220) © 2012 The President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Surprising Comparative Properties of Monetary Models: Results from a New Model Database John B. Taylor Stanford University and Hoover Institution Volker Wieland University of Frankfurt
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:14849
Note: ME
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  1. Keith Kuester & Volker Wieland, 2010. "Insurance Policies for Monetary Policy in the Euro Area," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 8(4), pages 872-912, 06.
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  8. Taylor, John B, 1980. "Aggregate Dynamics and Staggered Contracts," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 88(1), pages 1-23, February.
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  12. Wieland, Volker & Cwik, Tobias & Müller, Gernot J. & Schmidt, Sebastian & Wolters, Maik, 2012. "A new comparative approach to macroeconomic modeling and policy analysis," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 83(3), pages 523-541.
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  20. Frank Schorfheide, 2000. "Loss function-based evaluation of DSGE models," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 15(6), pages 645-670.
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  23. McCallum, Bennett T., 1999. "Issues in the design of monetary policy rules," Handbook of Macroeconomics, in: J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Macroeconomics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 23, pages 1483-1530 Elsevier.
  24. Lucas, Robert Jr, 1976. "Econometric policy evaluation: A critique," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 19-46, January.
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