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Why Are Target Interest Rate Changes so Persistent?

Why Are Target Interest Rate Changes so Persistent? Abstract While the degree of policy inertia in central banks' reaction functions is a central ingredient in theoretical and empirical monetary economics, the source of the observed policy inertia in the United States is controversial, with tests of competing hypotheses, such as interest-smoothing and persistent-shocks, being inconclusive. This paper employs real time data; nested specifications with flexible time series structures; narratives; interest rate forecasts of the Fed, financial markets, and professional forecasters; and instrumental variables to discriminate between competing explanations of policy inertia. The evidence strongly favors the interest-smoothing explanation and thus can help resolve a key puzzle in monetary economics. (JEL C53, E43, E47, E52, E58 ) http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics American Economic Association

Why Are Target Interest Rate Changes so Persistent?

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Publisher
American Economic Association
Copyright
Copyright © 2012 by the American Economic Association
Subject
Articles
ISSN
1945-7715
eISSN
1945-7715
DOI
10.1257/mac.4.4.126
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Abstract While the degree of policy inertia in central banks' reaction functions is a central ingredient in theoretical and empirical monetary economics, the source of the observed policy inertia in the United States is controversial, with tests of competing hypotheses, such as interest-smoothing and persistent-shocks, being inconclusive. This paper employs real time data; nested specifications with flexible time series structures; narratives; interest rate forecasts of the Fed, financial markets, and professional forecasters; and instrumental variables to discriminate between competing explanations of policy inertia. The evidence strongly favors the interest-smoothing explanation and thus can help resolve a key puzzle in monetary economics. (JEL C53, E43, E47, E52, E58 )

Journal

American Economic Journal: MacroeconomicsAmerican Economic Association

Published: Oct 1, 2012

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