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Inflation (mis)perceptions in the euro area

  • Francisco Craveiro Dias
  • Cláudia Duarte
  • António Rua

There has been a growing interest on inflation perceptions in the euro area, in particular, following the euro cash changeover. It has been pointed out that a gap emerged between observed and perceived inflation since the introduction of the euro notes and coins. Such a statement relies on the fact that inflation perceptions, measured by the well-known balance statistic from the European Commission's consumer survey, hiked after January 2002 and remained high thereafter, as opposed to the observed inflation, which has remained fairly stable. In this paper, we discuss the issue of inflation perceptions measurement, by comparing the balance statistic with an alternative refined measure, which is computed using the probability method. We argue that the balance statistic should be used carefully, as it can induce to misleading conclusions. In fact, we provide, for both euro area and country level, evidence showing that, using the proposed alternative measure, the breakdown in the relationship between observed and perceived inflation did not occur at the time of the euro cash changeover.

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Paper provided by Banco de Portugal, Economics and Research Department in its series Working Papers with number w200715.

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Date of creation: 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ptu:wpaper:w200715
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  1. Forsells, Magnus & Kenny, Geoff, 2002. "The rationality of consumers' inflation expectations: survey-based evidence for the euro area," Working Paper Series 0163, European Central Bank.
  2. King, Robert G. & Rebelo, Sergio T., 1993. "Low frequency filtering and real business cycles," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 17(1-2), pages 207-231.
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  8. Carlson, John A & Parkin, J Michael, 1975. "Inflation Expectations," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 42(166), pages 123-38, May.
  9. Bart Hobijn & Federico Ravenna & Andrea Tambalotti, 2004. "Menu costs at work: restaurant prices and the introduction of the euro," Staff Reports 195, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  10. Paolo Angelini & Francesco Lippi, 2007. "Did Prices Really Soar after the Euro Cash Changeover? Evidence from ATM Withdrawals," International Journal of Central Banking, International Journal of Central Banking, vol. 3(4), pages 1-22, December.
  11. Andrews, Donald W.K. & Kim, Jae-Young, 2006. "Tests for Cointegration Breakdown Over a Short Time Period," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 24, pages 379-394, October.
  12. Jan Marc Berk, 1999. "Measuring inflation expectations: a survey data approach," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 31(11), pages 1467-1480.
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