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The Optimal Inflation Target and the Natural Rate of Interest

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  • Philippe Andrade
  • Jordi Galí
  • Hervé Le Bihan
  • Julien Matheron

Abstract

We study how changes in the value of the steady-state real interest rate affect the optimal inflation target, both in the U.S. and the euro area, using an estimated New Keynesian DSGE model that incorporates the zero (or effective) lower bound on the nominal interest rate. We find that this relation is downward sloping, but its slope is not necessarily one-for-one: increases in the optimal inflation rate are generally lower than declines in the steady-state real interest rate. Our approach allows us not only to assess the uncertainty surrounding the optimal inflation target, but also to determine the latter while taking into account the parameter uncertainty facing the policy maker, including uncertainty with regard to the determinants of the steady-state real interest rate. We find that in the currently empirically relevant region for the US as well as the euro area, the slope of the curve is close to -0.9. That finding is robust to allowing for parameter uncertainty

Suggested Citation

  • Philippe Andrade & Jordi Galí & Hervé Le Bihan & Julien Matheron, 2018. "The Optimal Inflation Target and the Natural Rate of Interest," NBER Working Papers 24328, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:24328
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    Cited by:

    1. Davide Debortoli & Jordi Galí & Luca Gambetti, 2019. "On the Empirical (Ir)relevance of the Zero Lower Bound Constraint," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2019, volume 34, pages 141-170, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Günter Coenen & Carlos Montes-Galdón & Frank Smets, 2019. "Effects of State-Dependent Forward Guidance, Large-Scale Asset Purchases and Fiscal Stimulus in a Low-Interest-Rate Environment," Working Papers of Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Ghent University, Belgium 19/983, Ghent University, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration.
    3. Antoine Lepetit, 2017. "The Optimal Inflation Rate with Discount Factor Heterogeneity," Working Papers hal-01527816, HAL.
    4. Janice C. Eberly & James H. Stock & Jonathan H. Wright, 2019. "The Federal Reserve’s Current Framework for Monetary Policy: A Review and Assessment," NBER Working Papers 26002, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Tomohide Mineyama & Wataru Hirata & Kenji Nishizaki, 2019. "Inflation and Social Welfare in a New Keynesian Model: The Case of Japan and the U.S," Bank of Japan Working Paper Series 19-E-10, Bank of Japan.
    6. Lis, Eliza & Nickel, Christiane & Papetti, Andrea, 2020. "Demographics and inflation in the euro area: a two-sector new Keynesian perspective," Working Paper Series 2382, European Central Bank.
    7. Brand, Claus & Bielecki, Marcin & Penalver, Adrian, 2018. "The natural rate of interest: estimates, drivers, and challenges to monetary policy JEL Classification: E52, E43," Occasional Paper Series 217, European Central Bank.
    8. Jean-Philippe Bouchaud & Stanislao Gualdi & Marco Tarzia & Francesco Zamponi, 2018. "Optimal inflation target: insights from an agent-based model," Post-Print hal-01768441, HAL.
    9. Valerie Grossman & Enrique Martínez-García & Mark A. Wynne & Ren Zhang, 2019. "Ties That Bind: Estimating the Natural Rate of Interest for Small Open Economies," Globalization Institute Working Papers 359, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, revised 31 Mar 2019.
    10. Koeda, Junko, 2019. "Macroeconomic effects of quantitative and qualitative monetary easing measures," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 52(C), pages 121-141.
    11. repec:cpr:ceprdp:14142 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Bouchaud, Jean-Philippe & Gualdi, Stanislao & Tarzia, Marco & Zamponi, Francesco, 2018. "Optimal inflation target: Insights from an agent-based model," Economics - The Open-Access, Open-Assessment E-Journal, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW), vol. 12, pages 1-27.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E31 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Price Level; Inflation; Deflation
    • E51 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Money Supply; Credit; Money Multipliers
    • E58 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Central Banks and Their Policies

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