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World Food Prices and Monetary Policy

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  • Luis Catão
  • Roberto Chang

Abstract

In recent years, large fluctuations in world food prices have renewed interest in the question of how monetary policy in small open economies should react to imported price shocks. We address this issue in an open economy setting similar to previous ones except that food plays a distinctive role in utility. A key novelty of our model is that the real exchange rate and the terms of trade can move in opposite directions in response to food price shocks. This has several consequences for observables and for policy. Under a variety of model calibrations, broad CPI targeting emerges as welfare-superior to alternative policy rules once the variance of food price shocks is as large as in real world data.

Suggested Citation

  • Luis Catão & Roberto Chang, 2010. "World Food Prices and Monetary Policy," NBER Working Papers 16563, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:16563
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E5 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit
    • E6 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook
    • F41 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - Open Economy Macroeconomics

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