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Monetary policy, indeterminacy and learning

  • Evans, George W.
  • McGough, Bruce

The development of tractable forward looking models of monetary policy has lead to an explosion of research on the implications of adopting Taylor-type interest rate rules. Indeterminacies have been found to arise for some specifications of the interest rate rule, raising the possibility of inefficient fluctuations due to the dependence of expectations on extraneous “sunspots ”. Separately, recent work by a number of authors has shown that sunspot equilibria previously thought to be unstable under private agent learning can in some cases be stable when the observed sunspot has a suitable time series structure. In this paper we generalize the “common factor ”technique, used in this analysis, to examine standard monetary models that combine forward looking expectations and predetermined variables. We consider a variety of specifications that incorporate both lagged and expected inflation in the Phillips Curve, and both expected inflation and inertial elements in the policy rule. We find that some policy rules can indeed lead to learnable sunspot solutions and we investigate the conditions under which this phenomenon arises.

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Paper provided by Center for Financial Studies (CFS) in its series CFS Working Paper Series with number 2003/37.

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Date of creation: 2003
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Handle: RePEc:zbw:cfswop:200337
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  1. George W. Evans & Seppo Honkapohja, 2003. "Adaptive learning and monetary policy design," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, pages 1045-1084.
  2. Evans George W & McGough Bruce, 2005. "Indeterminacy and the Stability Puzzle in Non-Convex Economies," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 5(1), pages 1-46, September.
  3. Desgranges, Gabriel & Negroni, Giorgio, 2003. "Expectations Coordination On A Sunspot Equilibrium: An Eductive Approach," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 7(01), pages 7-41, February.
  4. Kaushik Mitra & Seppo Honkapohja, 2004. "Performance of Monetary Policy with Internal Central Bank Forecasting," Royal Holloway, University of London: Discussion Papers in Economics 04/18, Department of Economics, Royal Holloway University of London, revised Jul 2004.
  5. Honkapohja, S. & Evans, G.W., 2000. "Expectations and the Stability Problem for Optimal Monetary Policies," University of Helsinki, Department of Economics 481, Department of Economics.
  6. Evans George W. & Honkapohja Seppo, 1994. "On the Local Stability of Sunspot Equilibria under Adaptive Learning Rules," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 142-161, October.
  7. Farmer Roger E. A. & Guo Jang-Ting, 1994. "Real Business Cycles and the Animal Spirits Hypothesis," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 63(1), pages 42-72, June.
  8. 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.
  9. George W. Evans & Seppo Honkapohja, 2002. "Expectational Stability of Stationary Sunspot Equilibria in a Forward-looking Linear Model," University of Oregon Economics Department Working Papers 2001-9, University of Oregon Economics Department, revised 14 Jan 2002.
  10. Julio J. Rotemberg & Michael Woodford, 1999. "Interest Rate Rules in an Estimated Sticky Price Model," NBER Chapters, in: Monetary Policy Rules, pages 57-126 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Evans George W & Honkapohja Seppo M.S. & Marimon Ramon, 2007. "Stable Sunspot Equilibria in a Cash-in-Advance Economy," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 7(1), pages 1-38, January.
  12. Bullard, James & Mitra, Kaushik, 2002. "Learning about monetary policy rules," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(6), pages 1105-1129, September.
  13. Fuhrer, Jeff & Moore, George, 1995. "Inflation Persistence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 110(1), pages 127-59, February.
  14. Richard Clarida & Jordi Galí & Mark Gertler, 2000. "Monetary Policy Rules And Macroeconomic Stability: Evidence And Some Theory," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 115(1), pages 147-180, February.
  15. Ben S. Bernanke & Michael Woodford, 1997. "Inflation forecasts and monetary policy," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, pages 653-686.
  16. Evans, Geroge W & Honkapohja, Seppo & Romer, Paul, 1998. "Growth Cycles," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(3), pages 495-515, June.
  17. Michael Woodford, 1999. "Optimal monetary policy inertia," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  18. McCallum, Bennett T., 1999. "Issues in the design of monetary policy rules," Handbook of Macroeconomics, in: J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Macroeconomics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 23, pages 1483-1530 Elsevier.
  19. Honkapohja, Seppo & Mitra, Kaushik, 2004. "Are non-fundamental equilibria learnable in models of monetary policy?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(8), pages 1743-1770, November.
  20. Howitt, Peter & McAfee, R Preston, 1992. "Animal Spirits," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(3), pages 493-507, June.
  21. Evans, G.E. & Guesnerie, R., 1999. "Coordination on Saddle Path Solutions: the Eductive Viewpoint. 1- Linear Univariate Models," Papers 1999-15, Laval - Laboratoire Econometrie.
  22. George W. Evans & Seppo Honkapohja, 2001. "Existence of Adaptively Stable Sunspot Equilibria Near an Indeterminate Steady State," CESifo Working Paper Series 478, CESifo Group Munich.
  23. Woodford, Michael, 1986. "Learning to Believe in Sunspots," Working Papers 86-16, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  24. Glenn D. Rudebusch, 2001. "Term structure evidence on interest rate smoothing and monetary policy inertia," Working Paper Series 2001-02, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  25. Garratt, Anthony & Hall, Stephen G., 1997. "E-equilibria and adaptive expectations: Output and inflation in the LBS model," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 21(7), pages 1149-1171, June.
  26. Evans, George W. & McGough, Bruce, 2005. "Stable sunspot solutions in models with predetermined variables," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 29(4), pages 601-625, April.
  27. Taylor, John B., 1993. "Discretion versus policy rules in practice," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 195-214, December.
  28. Howitt, Peter, 1992. "Interest Rate Control and Nonconvergence to Rational Expectations," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(4), pages 776-800, August.
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