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Is Inflation Just Around the Corner? The Phillips Curve and Global Inflationary Pressures

Olivier Coibion, Yuriy Gorodnichenko, Mauricio Ulate

NBER Working Paper No. 25511
Issued in January 2019
NBER Program(s):Economic Fluctuations and Growth Program, The Monetary Economics Program

The length of the recovery since the Great Recession and the low reported levels of the unemployment rate in the U.S. are increasingly generating concerns about inflationary pressures. We document that an expectations-augmented Phillips curve can account for inflation not just in the U.S. but across a range of countries, once household or firm-level inflation expectations are used. Given this relationship, we can infer the dynamics of slack from the dynamics of inflation gaps and vice versa. We find that the implied slack was pushing inflation below expectations in the years after the Great Recession but the global and U.S. inflation gaps have shrunk in recent years thus suggesting tighter economic conditions. While we find no evidence that inflation is on the brink of rising, the sustained deflationary pressures following the Great Recession have abated.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w25511

Published: Olivier Coibion & Yuriy Gorodnichenko & Mauricio Ulate, 2019. "Is Inflation Just Around the Corner? The Phillips Curve and Global Inflationary Pressures," AEA Papers and Proceedings, vol 109, pages 465-469. citation courtesy of

 
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