Expectations and Economic Fluctuations: An Analysis Using Survey Data
39 Pages Posted: 12 Mar 2010
Date Written: February 2010
Using survey-based measures of future U.S. economic activity from the Livingston Survey and the Survey of Professional Forecasters, the authors study how changes in expectations, and their interaction with monetary policy, contribute to fluctuations in macroeconomic aggregates. They find that changes in expected future economic activity are a quantitatively important driver of economic fluctuations: a perception that good times are ahead typically leads to a significant rise in current measures of economic activity and inflation. The authors also find that the short-term interest rate rises in response to expectations of good times as monetary policy tightens. Their results provide quantitative evidence on the importance of expectations-driven business cycles and on the role that monetary policy plays in shaping them.
Keywords: Expectations, survey data, economic fluctuations
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