Bouchaud, Jean-Philippe Gualdi, Stanislao Tarzia, Marco Zamponi, Francesco
Year of Publication:
Economics Discussion Papers 2017-64
Which level of inflation should Central Banks be targeting? The authors investigate this issue in the context of a simplified Agent Based Model of the economy. Depending on the value of the parameters that describe the micro-behaviour of agents (in particular inflation anticipations), they find a surprisingly rich variety of behaviour at the macro-level. Without any monetary policy, our ABM economy can be in a high inflation/high output state, or in a low inflation/low output state. Hyper-inflation, stagflation, deflation and business cycles are also possible. The authors then introduce a Central Bank with a Taylor-rule-based inflation target, and study the resulting aggregate variables. The main result is that too low inflation targets are in general detrimental to a CB-controlled economy. One symptom is a persistent under-realisation of inflation, perhaps similar to the current macroeconomic situation. This predicament is alleviated by higher inflation targets that are found to improve both unemployment and negative interest rate episodes, up to the point where erosion of savings becomes unacceptable. The results are contrasted with the predictions of the standard DSGE model.
Agent based models monetary policy inflation target Taylor rule