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Modeling Inflation After the Crisis

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  • James H. Stock
  • Mark W. Watson

Abstract

In the United States, the rate of price inflation falls in recessions. Turning this observation into a useful inflation forecasting equation is difficult because of multiple sources of time variation in the inflation process, including changes in Fed policy and credibility. We propose a tightly parameterized model in which the deviation of inflation from a stochastic trend (which we interpret as long-term expected inflation) reacts stably to a new gap measure, which we call the unemployment recession gap. The short-term response of inflation to an increase in this gap is stable, but the long-term response depends on the resilience, or anchoring, of trend inflation. Dynamic simulations (given the path of unemployment) match the paths of inflation during post-1960 downturns, including the current one.

Suggested Citation

  • James H. Stock & Mark W. Watson, 2010. "Modeling Inflation After the Crisis," NBER Working Papers 16488, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:16488
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C22 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Time-Series Models; Dynamic Quantile Regressions; Dynamic Treatment Effect Models; Diffusion Processes
    • E31 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Price Level; Inflation; Deflation

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