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Forward-looking Behaviour and Credibility: Some Evidence and Implications for Policy

Author

Listed:
  • Gordon de Brouwer

    (Reserve Bank of Australia)

  • Luci Ellis

    (Reserve Bank of Australia)

Abstract

Whether people form their expectations of the future in a model-consistent or extrapolative manner, has implications for the way the economy and monetary policy are modelled. The first half of this paper provides three pieces of information about inflation expectations – that survey measures of expectations are inconsistent with rational expectations, but less so for financial markets than households; that actual and expected inflation interact with each other; and that the foreign exchange market anticipates tighter monetary policy when inflation is higher than expected. The second half of the paper explores some policy implications. First, the variability of inflation and output is lower when policy-makers respond to model-based forecasts, rather than just current values, of inflation and output. Second, model-consistent behaviour elsewhere in the economy stabilises inflation and output, given that the model includes a central bank reaction function which the public believes the bank will adhere to. When inflation expectations differ between groups, the ex ante real interest rates that affect output and the exchange rate differ from each other, and this can induce oscillations or overshooting in the exchange rate, with consequences for the variability of inflation and output. Third, ‘optimal’ policy cannot fully compensate for the greater variability in inflation and output associated with extrapolative expectations.

Suggested Citation

  • Gordon de Brouwer & Luci Ellis, 1998. "Forward-looking Behaviour and Credibility: Some Evidence and Implications for Policy," RBA Research Discussion Papers rdp9803, Reserve Bank of Australia.
  • Handle: RePEc:rba:rbardp:rdp9803
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    File URL: http://www.rba.gov.au/publications/rdp/1998/pdf/rdp9803.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Taylor, John B, 1980. "Aggregate Dynamics and Staggered Contracts," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 88(1), pages 1-23, February.
    2. Guy Debelle & Glenn Stevens, 1995. "Monetary Policy Goals for Inflation in Australia," RBA Research Discussion Papers rdp9503, Reserve Bank of Australia.
    3. Cochrane, John H., 1998. "What do the VARs mean? Measuring the output effects of monetary policy," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(2), pages 277-300, April.
    4. de Brouwer, Gordon & Ericsson, Neil R, 1998. "Modeling Inflation in Australia," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 16(4), pages 433-449, October.
    5. Roberts, John M., 1997. "Is inflation sticky?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(2), pages 173-196, July.
    6. Gruen, David W R & Wilkinson, Jenny, 1994. "Australia's Real Exchange Rate--Is It Explained by the Terms of Trade or by Real Interest Differentials?," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 70(209), pages 204-219, June.
    7. Bernanke, Ben S & Woodford, Michael, 1997. "Inflation Forecasts and Monetary Policy," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 29(4), pages 653-684, November.
    8. Calvo, Guillermo A., 1983. "Staggered prices in a utility-maximizing framework," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 383-398, September.
    9. Dornbusch, Rudiger, 1976. "Expectations and Exchange Rate Dynamics," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 84(6), pages 1161-1176, December.
    10. David Gruen & Geoffrey Shuetrim, 1994. "Internationalisation and the Macroeconomy," RBA Annual Conference Volume,in: Philip Lowe & Jacqueline Dwyer (ed.), International Intergration of the Australian Economy Reserve Bank of Australia.
    11. Blake, Andrew P & Westaway, Peter F, 1996. "Credibility and the Effectiveness of Inflation Targeting Regimes," The Manchester School of Economic & Social Studies, University of Manchester, vol. 64(0), pages 28-50, Suppl..
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Andrew Levin & Volker Wieland & John C. Williams, 2003. "The Performance of Forecast-Based Monetary Policy Rules Under Model Uncertainty," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(3), pages 622-645, June.
    2. Huang, Kevin X.D. & Meng, Qinglai & Xue, Jianpo, 2009. "Is forward-looking inflation targeting destabilizing? The role of policy's response to current output under endogenous investment," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 409-430, February.
    3. David Hargreaves, 1999. "SDS-FPS: a small demand-side version of the Forecasting and Policy System core model," Reserve Bank of New Zealand Discussion Paper Series G99/10, Reserve Bank of New Zealand.
    4. Tony Makin, 2003. "Inflation Expectations, Interest Rates and Arbitrary Income Transfers," Australian Economic Review, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, vol. 36(3), pages 283-290.
    5. Kevin Lee & Nilss Olekalns & Kalvinder Shields, 2013. "Meta Taylor Rules for the UK and Australia; Accommodating Regime Uncertainty in Monetary Policy Analysis Using Model Averaging Methods," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 81, pages 28-53, October.
    6. Frank Campbell & Eleanor Lewis, 1998. "What Moves Yields in Australia?," RBA Research Discussion Papers rdp9808, Reserve Bank of Australia.
    7. West, L.k. & Agbola, W.F., 2005. "Causality Links Between Asset Prices And Cash Rate In Australia," International Journal of Applied Econometrics and Quantitative Studies, Euro-American Association of Economic Development, vol. 2(3), pages 69-86.
    8. Marcela Meirelles Aurelio, 2005. "Do we really know how inflation targeters set interest rates?," Research Working Paper RWP 05-02, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    expectations; inflation; credibility; monetary policy;

    JEL classification:

    • C61 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling - - - Optimization Techniques; Programming Models; Dynamic Analysis
    • D84 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Expectations; Speculations
    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy
    • 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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