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Inflation Persistence and the Phillips Curve Revisited

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  • Marika Karanassou

    () (Queen Mary, University of London and IZA)

  • Dennis J. Snower

    () (Institute for World Economics, CEPR and IZA)

Abstract

A major criticism against staggered nominal contracts is that they give rise to the so called "persistency puzzle" - although they generate price inertia, they cannot account for the stylised fact of inflation persistence. It is thus commonly asserted that, in the context of the new Phillips curve (NPC), inflation is a jump variable. We argue that this "persistency puzzle" is highly misleading, relying on the exogeneity of the forcing variable (e.g. output gap, marginal costs, unemployment rate) and the assumption of a zero discount rate. We show that when the discount rate is positive in a general equilibrium setting (in which real variables not only affect inflation, but are also influenced by it), standard wage-price staggering models can generate both substantial inflation persistence and a nonzero inflation-unemployment tradeoff in the long-run. This is due to frictional growth, a phenomenon that captures the interplay of nominal staggering and permanent monetary changes. We also show that the cumulative amount of inflation undershooting is associated with a downward-sloping NPC in the long-run.

Suggested Citation

  • Marika Karanassou & Dennis J. Snower, 2007. "Inflation Persistence and the Phillips Curve Revisited," Working Papers 586, Queen Mary University of London, School of Economics and Finance.
  • Handle: RePEc:qmw:qmwecw:wp586
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Marika Karanassou & Hector Sala & Dennis J. Snower, 2008. "The Evolution Of Inflation And Unemployment: Explaining The Roaring Nineties," Australian Economic Papers, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(4), pages 334-354, December.
    2. Knell, Markus & Stiglbauer, Alfred, 2009. "The impact of reference norms on inflation persistence when wages are staggered," Working Paper Series 1047, European Central Bank.
    3. Marika Karanassou & Hector Sala, 2012. "Productivity Growth And The Phillips Curve: A Reassessment Of The Us Experience," Bulletin of Economic Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 64(3), pages 344-366, July.
    4. Agénor, Pierre-Richard & Bayraktar, Nihal, 2010. "Contracting models of the Phillips curve empirical estimates for middle-income countries," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 555-570, June.
    5. Bentolila, Samuel & Dolado, Juan J. & Jimeno, Juan F., 2008. "Does immigration affect the Phillips curve? Some evidence for Spain," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 52(8), pages 1398-1423, November.
    6. Adolfo Sachsida & Marcio Ribeiro & Claudio Hamilton dos Santos, 2009. "A Curva de Phillips e a Experiência Brasileira," Discussion Papers 1429, Instituto de Pesquisa Econômica Aplicada - IPEA.
    7. Andrew Phiri, 2012. "Threshold effects and inflation persistence in South Africa," Journal of Financial Economic Policy, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 4(3), pages 247-269, July.
    8. Bentolila, Samuel & Dolado, Juan J. & Jimeno, Juan F., 2008. "Does immigration affect the Phillips curve? Some evidence for Spain," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 52(8), pages 1398-1423, November.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Inflation dynamics; Persistence; Wage-price staggering; New Phillips curve; Monetary policy; Frictional growth;

    JEL classification:

    • E31 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Price Level; Inflation; Deflation
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • E42 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Monetary Sytsems; Standards; Regimes; Government and the Monetary System
    • E63 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Comparative or Joint Analysis of Fiscal and Monetary Policy; Stabilization; Treasury Policy

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