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Limited Commitment, Inaction and Optimal Monetary Policy

  • Tokhir Mirzoev

    (Ohio State University)

This paper examines the optimal frequency of monetary policy meetings when their schedule is pre-announced. Our contribution is twofold. First, we show that in the standard New Keynesian framework infrequent but periodic revision of monetary policy may be desirable even when there are no explicit costs of policy adjustment. Adjustment of policy on a pre-announced schedule de facto acts as a commitment not to adjust in intermediate periods. We find that at short horizons gains from such commitment outweigh welfare costs of central bank's inaction. Second, we solve for the optimal frequency of policy adjustment and characterize its determinants. When applied to the U.S. economy, our analysis suggests that the Federal Open Markets Committee should revise the federal funds target rate no more than twice a year.

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File URL: http://128.118.178.162/eps/mac/papers/0409/0409027.pdf
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Paper provided by EconWPA in its series Macroeconomics with number 0409027.

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Length: 49 pages
Date of creation: 29 Sep 2004
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpma:0409027
Note: Type of Document - pdf; pages: 49
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://128.118.178.162

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  1. Peter N. Ireland, 2004. "Technology Shocks in the New Keynesian Model," NBER Working Papers 10309, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Clarida, R. & Gali, J. & Gertler, M., 1999. "The Science of Monetary Policy: A New Keynesian Perspective," Working Papers 99-13, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  3. Jordi Galí & J. David López-Salido & Javier Vallés, 2005. "Understanding the Effects of Government Spending on Consumption," NBER Working Papers 11578, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  11. Dennis, Richard & Soderstrom, Ulf, 2006. "How Important Is Precommitment for Monetary Policy?," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 38(4), pages 847-872, June.
  12. Ernst Schaumburg & Andrea Tambalotti, 2003. "An investigation of the gains from commitment in monetary policy," Staff Reports 171, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  13. Domeij, David & Floden, Martin, 2001. "The labor-supply elasticity and borrowing constraints: Why estimates are biased," SSE/EFI Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 480, Stockholm School of Economics.
  14. Edward C. Prescott, 2004. "Why do Americans work so much more than Europeans?," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, issue Jul, pages 2-13.
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  16. Gali, Jordi & Gertler, Mark & Lopez-Salido, J. David, 2001. "European inflation dynamics," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(7), pages 1237-1270.
  17. A. Hakan Kara, 2004. "Optimal Monetary Policy, Commitment, and Imperfect Credibility," Central Bank Review, Research and Monetary Policy Department, Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey, vol. 4(1), pages 31-66.
  18. Barro, Robert J & Gordon, David B, 1983. "A Positive Theory of Monetary Policy in a Natural Rate Model," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 91(4), pages 589-610, August.
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