The IMF Working Papers series is designed to make IMF staff research available to a wide audience. Almost 300 Working Papers are released each year, covering a wide range of theoretical and analytical topics, including balance of payments, monetary and fiscal issues, global liquidity, and national and international economic developments.
This paper reexamines the effects of inflation targeting on output stability. It considers an economy with staggered price setting that is exposed to price shocks and where the policymaker cannot observe the current realizations of aggregate output and inflation. The paper shows that, if some price shocks can be anticipated, the effects of inflation targeting depend critically on the inflation indicator being targeted. Specifically, targeting headline inflation can severely destabilize output, while targeting inflation indicator of sticky prices may eliminate that problem and make the response of the output gap to aggregate shocks short-lived.