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Monetary Policy with Model Uncertainty: Distribution Forecast Targeting

  • Noah Williams
  • Lars E.O. Svensson

We examine optimal and other monetary policies in a linear-quadratic setup with relatively general forms of model uncertainty. The forms of uncertainty our framework encompasses include: simple i.i.d. model deviations; serially correlated model deviations; estimable regime-switching models; more complex structural uncertainty, such as uncertainty about a set of structurally very different models, for instance, backward- and forward-looking models; central-bank judgment about the state of model uncertainty; and so forth. We provide an algorithm for finding the optimal policy as well as solutions for arbitrary reaction functions. This allows us to compute and plot consistent distribution forecasts---fan charts---of target variables and instruments. Our methods hence extend certainty equivalence and "mean forecast targeting" to the more general certainty non-equivalence and "distribution forecast targeting."

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Paper provided by Society for Computational Economics in its series Computing in Economics and Finance 2005 with number 108.

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Date of creation: 11 Nov 2005
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Handle: RePEc:sce:scecf5:108
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  1. Christopher A. Sims, 2002. "The Role of Models and Probabilities in the Monetary Policy Process," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 33(2), pages 1-62.
  2. Rudebusch, Glenn D & Svensson, Lars E O, 1998. "Policy Rules for Inflation Targeting," CEPR Discussion Papers 1999, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. James A. Kahn & Robert Rich, 2003. "Tracking the new economy: using growth theory to detect changes in trend productivity," Staff Reports 159, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  4. Lars E.O. Svensson, 2005. "Monetary Policy with Judgment: Forecast Targeting," NBER Working Papers 11167, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Andrew T. Levin & Alexei Onatski & John C. Williams & Noah Williams, 2005. "Monetary Policy Under Uncertainty in Micro-Founded Macroeconometric Models," NBER Working Papers 11523, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Lars E.O. Svensson & Michael Woodford, 2004. "Implementing Optimal Policy through Inflation-Forecast Targeting," NBER Chapters, in: The Inflation-Targeting Debate, pages 19-92 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. James H. Stock & Mark W. Watson, 2003. "Has the Business Cycle Changed and Why?," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2002, Volume 17, pages 159-230 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Linde, Jesper, 2005. "Estimating New-Keynesian Phillips curves: A full information maximum likelihood approach," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(6), pages 1135-1149, September.
  9. Timothy Cogley & Riccardo Colacito & Thomas J. Sargent, 2007. "Benefits from U.S. Monetary Policy Experimentation in the Days of Samuelson and Solow and Lucas," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 39(s1), pages 67-99, 02.
  10. Professor Lars E O Svensson, 2001. "Independent review of the operation of monetary policy in New Zealand," Reserve Bank of New Zealand Bulletin, Reserve Bank of New Zealand, vol. 64, March.
  11. Alan Greenspan, 2004. "Risk and Uncertainty in Monetary Policy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(2), pages 33-40, May.
  12. Svensson, Lars E O, 1999. "Price Stability as a Target for Monetary Policy: Defining and Maintaining Price Stability," CEPR Discussion Papers 2196, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  13. Troy Davig & Eric M. Leeper, 2005. "Generalizing the Taylor Principle," NBER Working Papers 11874, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Timothy Cogley & Thomas Sargent & Riccardo Colacito, 2005. "Benefits from U.S. Monetary Policy Experimentation in the Days of Samuelson," 2005 Meeting Papers 791, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  15. Albert Marcet & Ramon Marimon, 1994. "Recursive contracts," Economics Working Papers 337, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Oct 1998.
  16. Lars E.O. Svensson & Robert J. Tetlow, 2005. "Optimal Policy Projections," International Journal of Central Banking, International Journal of Central Banking, vol. 1(3), December.
  17. Roger E.A. Farmer & Daniel F. Waggoner & Tao Zha, 2007. "Understanding the New Keynesian model when monetary policy switches regimes," Working Paper 2007-12, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
  18. Alexei Onatski & Noah Williams, 2003. "Modeling Model Uncertainty," NBER Working Papers 9566, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. do Val, Joao B. R. & Basar, Tamer, 1999. "Receding horizon control of jump linear systems and a macroeconomic policy problem," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 23(8), pages 1099-1131, August.
  20. Fabrizio Zampolli & Andrew Blake, 2005. "Time Consistent Policy in Markov Switching Models," Money Macro and Finance (MMF) Research Group Conference 2005 2, Money Macro and Finance Research Group.
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  28. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521104609 is not listed on IDEAS
  29. Evan W. Anderson & Lars Peter Hansen & Ellen R. McGrattan & Thomas J. Sargent, 1995. "On the mechanics of forming and estimating dynamic linear economies," Staff Report 198, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  30. Hamilton, James D, 1989. "A New Approach to the Economic Analysis of Nonstationary Time Series and the Business Cycle," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(2), pages 357-84, March.
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