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.
When faced with a relative price shock, monetary authorities often aim to contain its second round effects on inflation while accepting first round effects. We analyze the experience of South Africa and other inflation targeters to explore whether and when this policy prescription implies changing the monetary policy stance. Inflation targeting central banks differ on how aggressively they typically react to relative price shocks, reflecting differences in resilience of underlying inflation to such shocks. An examination of individual policy decisions reveals the importance of the broader economic context in framing the responses to relative price shocks.