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Indeterminacy, Bubbles, and the Fiscal Theory of Price Level Determination

  • Bennett T. McCallum

The recently-developed fiscal theory of price level determination contends that there is an important class of policy rules in which there exists a unique rational expectations solution that shows the price level to be dependent upon fiscal policy and independent of monetary variables. The present paper argues, however, that there is an alternative solution to these models that has entirely traditional (or monetarist') properties. This latter solution is perhaps the more plausible since it is the solution that is typically regarded as the bubble-free fundamentals' solution. The argument involves a respecification of feasible instrument variables.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 6456.

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Date of creation: Mar 1998
Date of revision:
Publication status: published as Journal of Monetary Economics, Vol. 47, no. 1 (February 2001): 19-30
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:6456
Note: EFG ME
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  1. Woodford, Michael, 1994. "Monetary Policy and Price Level Determinacy in a Cash-in-Advance Economy," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 4(3), pages 345-80.
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  6. John H. Cochrane, 1998. "A Frictionless View of U.S. Inflation," CRSP working papers 479, Center for Research in Security Prices, Graduate School of Business, University of Chicago.
  7. Bennett T. McCallum, 1981. "On Non-Uniqueness in Rational Expectations Models: An Attempt at Perspective," NBER Working Papers 0684, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Bennett T. McCallum, . "Role of the minimal state variable criterion in rational expectations models," GSIA Working Papers 1999-13, Carnegie Mellon University, Tepper School of Business.
  9. Brock, William A., 1975. "A simple perfect foresight monetary model," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 1(2), pages 133-150, April.
  10. Willem H. Buiter, 1999. "The Fallacy of the Fiscal Theory of the Price Level," NBER Working Papers 7302, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Willem H. Buiter, 1998. "The Young Person's Guide to Neutrality, Price Level Indeterminacy, Interest Rate Pegs, and Fiscal Theories of the Price Level," NBER Working Papers 6396, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Maurice Obstfeld & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 1981. "Speculative hyperinflations in a maximizing models: can we rule them out?," International Finance Discussion Papers 195, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  13. Timothy J. Kehoe & David K. Levine & Michael Woodford, 1990. "The optimum quantity of money revisited," Working Papers 404, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  14. Black, Fischer, 1974. "Uniqueness of the price level in monetary growth models with rational expectations," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 7(1), pages 53-65, January.
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  16. Taylor, John B, 1977. "Conditions for Unique Solutions in Stochastic Macroeconomic Models with Rational Expectations," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 45(6), pages 1377-85, September.
  17. Eric M. Leeper & Christopher A. Sims, 1994. "Toward a modern macroeconomic model usable for policy analysis," FRB Atlanta Working Paper 94-5, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
  18. Woodford, Michael, 1990. "The optimum quantity of money," Handbook of Monetary Economics, in: B. M. Friedman & F. H. Hahn (ed.), Handbook of Monetary Economics, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 20, pages 1067-1152 Elsevier.
  19. Sims, Christopher A, 1994. "A Simple Model for Study of the Determination of the Price Level and the Interaction of Monetary and Fiscal Policy," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 4(3), pages 381-99.
  20. Sargent, Thomas J & Wallace, Neil, 1975. ""Rational" Expectations, the Optimal Monetary Instrument, and the Optimal Money Supply Rule," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 83(2), pages 241-54, April.
  21. McCallum, Bennett T., 1986. "Some issues concerning interest rate pegging, price level determinacy, and the real bills doctrine," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(1), pages 135-160, January.
  22. Canzoneri, Matthew B & Cumby, Robert & Diba, Behzad, 1998. "Is the Price Level Determined by the Needs of Fiscal Solvency?," CEPR Discussion Papers 1772, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  23. Sims, Christopher A., 1998. "Econometric implications of the government budget constraint," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 83(1-2), pages 9-19.
  24. Sargent, Thomas J & Wallace, Neil, 1973. "The Stability of Models of Money and Growth with Perfect Foresight," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 41(6), pages 1043-48, November.
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