NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Globalization and Inflation-Output Tradeoffs

Assaf Razin, Prakash Loungani

NBER Working Paper No. 11641
Issued in September 2005
NBER Program(s):   IFM   ITI

We demonstrate how capital account and trade account liberalizations help reduce inefficiencies associated with the fluctuations in the output gap, relative to the inefficiencies associated with the fluctuations in inflation. With capital account liberalization the representative household is able to smooth fluctuations in consumption, and thus becomes relatively insensitive to fluctuations in the output gap. With trade liberalization the economy tends to specialize in production but not in consumption. The correlation between fluctuations in the output gap and aggregate consumption is therefore weakened by trade openness; hence a smaller weight on the output gap in the utility-based loss function, compared to the closed economy situations.A key implication of the theory is that globalization forces could induce monetary authorities, to put a greater emphasis on reducing the inflation rate than on narrowing the output gaps. We provide a re- interpretation of the evidence on the effect of openness on the sacrifice ratio which supports the prediction of the theory.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w11641

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