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The Time Consistency of Optimal Monetary Policy with Heterogeneous Agents

  • Stefania Albanesi

    (Bocconi University)

This paper studies the structure and time consistency of optimal monetary policy from a public finance perspective in an economy where agents differ in preference for liquidity and holdings of nominal assets. I find that the presence of distributional effects breaks the link between time consistency and high inflation, which characterizes representative agent models. For a large class of economies, optimal monetary policy is time consistent. I relate these findings to key historical episodes of inflation and deflation.

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Paper provided by EconWPA in its series Macroeconomics with number 0201003.

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Length: 31 pages
Date of creation: 10 Jan 2002
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpma:0201003
Note: Type of Document - Acrobat PDF; prepared on IBM PC ; to print on HP; pages: 31 ; figures: included. 31 pages PDF format
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  1. Fernando Alvarez & Patrick J. Kehoe & Pablo Neumeyer, 2003. "The time consistency of monetary and fiscal policies," Staff Report 305, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  2. Casey B. Mulligan & Xavier Sala-i-Martin, 2000. "Extensive Margins and the Demand for Money at Low Interest Rates," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(5), pages 961-991, October.
  3. V. V. Chari & Lawrence J. Christiano & Patrick J. Kehoe, 1991. "Optimal fiscal and monetary policy: some recent results," Staff Report 147, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  4. Caselli, Francesco, 1997. "On the distribution of debt and taxes," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(3), pages 367-386, September.
  5. Stefania Albanesi & V. V. Chari & Lawrence J. Christiano, 2002. "Expectation Traps and Monetary Policy," Macroeconomics 0201004, EconWPA.
  6. Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum & Charles L. Evans, 1996. "Sticky price and limited participation models of money: a comparison," Staff Report 227, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  7. Orazio Attanasio & Luigi Guiso & Tullio Jappelli, 1998. "The Demand for Money, Financial Innovation, and the Welfare Cost of Inflation: An Analysis with Households' Data," CSEF Working Papers 03, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy.
  8. Robert E. Lucas Jr. & Nancy L. Stokey, 1982. "Optimal Fiscal and Monetary Policy in an Economy Without Capital," Discussion Papers 532, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  9. Chari, V.V. & Kehoe, Patrick J., 1999. "Optimal fiscal and monetary policy," Handbook of Macroeconomics, in: J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Macroeconomics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 26, pages 1671-1745 Elsevier.
  10. Pearce, David & Stacchetti, Ennio, 1997. "Time Consistent Taxation by a Government with Redistributive Goals," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 72(2), pages 282-305, February.
  11. Robert J. Barro & David B. Gordon, 1983. "Rules, Discretion and Reputation in a Model of Monetary Policy," NBER Working Papers 1079, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Erosa, Andres & Ventura, Gustavo, 2002. "On inflation as a regressive consumption tax," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(4), pages 761-795, May.
  13. Nicolini, Juan Pablo, 1998. "More on the time consistency of monetary policy," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(2), pages 333-350, April.
  14. Bernheim, B Douglas, 1991. "Optimal Fiscal and Monetary Policy: Some Recent Results," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 23(3), pages 540-42, August.
  15. V.V. Chari & Lawrence J. Christiano & Patrick J. Kehoe, 1993. "Optimality of the Friedman rule in economies with distorting taxes," Staff Report 158, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  16. Sargent, Thomas J & Velde, Francois R, 1995. "Macroeconomic Features of the French Revolution," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(3), pages 474-518, June.
  17. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1977. "Rules Rather Than Discretion: The Inconsistency of Optimal Plans," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 473-91, June.
  18. Robert J. Barro & David B. Gordon, 1981. "A Positive Theory of Monetary Policy in a Natural-Rate Model," NBER Working Papers 0807, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Stefania Albanesi & V.V. Chari & Lawrence J. Christiano, 2001. "How Severe is the Time Inconsistency Problem in Monetary Policy?," NBER Working Papers 8139, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Persson, Mats & Persson, Torsten & Svensson, Lars E O, 1987. "Time Consistency of Fiscal and Monetary Policy," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(6), pages 1419-31, November.
  21. Rogers, Carol Ann, 1986. "The effect of distributive goals on the time inconsistency of optimal taxes," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 251-269, March.
  22. Jon Faust, 1992. "Whom can we trust to run the Fed? Theoretical support for the founders' views," International Finance Discussion Papers 429, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  23. 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.
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