NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Anticipated Money, Inflation Uncertainty, and Real Economic Activity

John H. Makin

NBER Working Paper No. 760 (Also Reprint No. r0261)
Issued in September 1981
NBER Program(s):   ME

This paper critically examines a number of maintained hypotheses that are necessarily being tested along with the basic notion derived from the rational expectations (RE) formulation of Lucas (1972) (19 73) that "only unanticipated money matters." The trend stationary representation of secular real output of Lucas and others is replaced by a difference stationary representation found by Nelson and Plosser (1980) to be consistent with U. S. historical data. The impact of inflation uncertainty on real activity is considered. Attention is paid to possible mis-measurement of agents' ex ante -- anticipated money growth. It is found that three alternative measures of anticipated money growth produce a stable impact on growth of output and employment. Contemporaneous and lagged values of unanticipated money growth have no significant additional explanatory power in the presence of any one of the three measures of anticipated money growth. Beyond this, it is impossible to reject the hypothesis that the initial positive real impact of anticipated money is not temporary. Inflation uncertainty is found to act as a significant depressant of real economic activity in the presence of all tested combinations of anticipated and unanticipated money growth.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w0760

Published: Makin, John H. "Anticipated Money, Inflation Uncertainty, and Real Economic Activity." The Review of Economics and Statistics, Vol. LXIV, No. 1, (February 1982), pp. 126-134.

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