Institutional Affiliation: Federal Reserve Bank of Boston
|No Firm is an Island? How Industry Conditions Shape Firms' Aggregate Expectations|
with Olivier Coibion, Erwan Gautier, Yuriy Gorodnichenko: w27317
We study how firms’ expectations and actions are affected by both aggregate and industry-specific conditions using a survey of French manufacturing firms. We document two novel features. First, the adjustment of firms’ expectations is more rapid after industry-specific shocks than aggregate shocks. This is consistent with rational inattention models which predict that firms should pay more attention to industry variation than aggregate conditions. Second, in response to industry shocks that have no aggregate effects, firms’ aggregate expectations respond. This is consistent with “island” models in which firms use the specific prices they observe to make inferences about broader aggregate conditions. We also study how these results vary across industries.
|The Optimal Inflation Target and the Natural Rate of Interest|
with Jordi Galí, Hervé Le Bihan, Julien Matheron: w24328
We study how changes in the value of the steady-state real interest rate affect the optimal inflation target, both in the U.S. and the euro area, using an estimated New Keynesian DSGE model that incorporates the zero (or effective) lower bound on the nominal interest rate. We find that this relation is downward sloping, but its slope is not necessarily one-for-one: increases in the optimal inflation rate are generally lower than declines in the steady-state real interest rate. Our approach allows us not only to assess the uncertainty surrounding the optimal inflation target, but also to determine the latter while taking into account the parameter uncertainty facing the policy maker, including uncertainty with regard to the determinants of the steady-state real interest rate. We find that i...