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Monetary Rules for Commodity Traders

  • Luis Catão
  • Roberto Chang

We develop a dynamic model of a small open economy that trades commodities whose world prices are subject to realistic random fluctuations, and study the implications of monetary policy alternatives. The model is much more flexible than those of previous studies, especially in allowing to compare perfect risk sharing against financial autarky. In each case we show how to derive analytically optimal Ramsey allocations and flexible price allocations, and hence to examine the crucial role of behavioral elasticities, production structure, and capital mobility in determining the welfare properties of different monetary choices. Applying these insights to a calibrated example, we find that the impulse responses associated with PPI targeting track flexible price allocations closely, but can diverge greatly from the Ramsey allocations, especially when risk sharing is perfect and the elasticity of demand for exports of a home aggregate is high. In those cases, policies that stabilize the real exchange rate more than PPI targeting, such as targeting expected inflation, deliver higher welfare. But PPI targeting is the clear winner under portfolio autarky.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 18536.

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Date of creation: Nov 2012
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Publication status: published as Luis Cat�o & Roberto Chang, 2013. "Monetary Rules for Commodity Traders," IMF Economic Review, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 61(1), pages 52-91, April.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:18536
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  1. Schmitt-Grohé, Stephanie & Uribe, Martín, 2004. "Optimal Simple and Implementable Monetary and Fiscal Rules," CEPR Discussion Papers 4334, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Kilian, Lutz, 2006. "Not All Oil Price Shocks Are Alike: Disentangling Demand and Supply Shocks in the Crude Oil Market," CEPR Discussion Papers 5994, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Schmitt-Grohe, Stephanie & Uribe, Martin, 2004. "Solving dynamic general equilibrium models using a second-order approximation to the policy function," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 755-775, January.
  4. Huiwen Lai & Daniel Trefler, 2002. "The Gains from Trade with Monopolistic Competition: Specification, Estimation, and Mis-Specification," NBER Working Papers 9169, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  6. Ester Faia & Tommaso Monacelli, 2008. "Optimal Monetary Policy in a Small Open Economy with Home Bias," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 40(4), pages 721-750, 06.
  7. David M. Arseneau & Sylvain Leduc, 2012. "Commodity price movements in a general equilibrium model of storage," International Finance Discussion Papers 1054, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  8. Cashin, Paul & Cespedes, Luis F. & Sahay, Ratna, 2004. "Commodity currencies and the real exchange rate," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 75(1), pages 239-268, October.
  9. Gianluca Benigno & Pierpaolo Benigno, 2003. "Price Stability in Open Economies," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 70(4), pages 743-764.
  10. Luis Catão & Roberto Chang, 2010. "World Food Prices and Monetary Policy," NBER Working Papers 16563, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Martin Bodenstein & Christopher J. Erceg & Luca Guerrieri, 2008. "Optimal monetary policy with distinct core and headline inflation rates," International Finance Discussion Papers 941, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  12. Sutherland, Alan, 2005. "Incomplete pass-through and the welfare effects of exchange rate variability," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(2), pages 375-399, March.
  13. Hevia, Constantino & Nicolini, Juan Pablo, 2009. "Optimal devaluations," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4926, The World Bank.
  14. Jens Sondergaard & Pietro Cova, 2004. "When Should Monetary Policy Target The Exchange Rate?," Royal Economic Society Annual Conference 2004 51, Royal Economic Society.
  15. Monacelli, Tommaso, 2012. "Is Monetary Policy in an Open Economy Fundamentally Different?," CEPR Discussion Papers 9087, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  16. Bianca De Paoli, 2004. "Monetary policy and welfare in a small open economy," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 19950, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  17. Harrigan, James, 1993. "OECD imports and trade barriers in 1983," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(1-2), pages 91-111, August.
  18. Heckman, James J, 1993. "What Has Been Learned about Labor Supply in the Past Twenty Years?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(2), pages 116-21, May.
  19. Jordi Gal� & Tommaso Monacelli, 2005. "Monetary Policy and Exchange Rate Volatility in a Small Open Economy," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 72(3), pages 707-734.
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