The New-Keynesian Liquidity Trap
40 Pages Posted: 28 Sep 2013
Date Written: September 2013
In standard solutions, the new-Keynesian model produces a deep recession with deflation in a liquidity trap. The model also makes unusual policy predictions: Useless government spending, technical regress, and capital destruction have large multipliers. These predictions become larger as prices become less sticky. I show that both sets of predictions are strongly affected by equilibrium selection. For the same interest-rate path, different choices of equilibria - either by the researcher's direct selection or the researcher's specification of expected Federal Reserve policy - can overturn all these results. A set of "local-to-frictionless" equilibria predicts mild inflation, no output reduction and negative multipliers during the liquidity trap, and its predictions approach the frictionless model smoothly, all for the same interest rate path.
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