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.
The paper evaluates whether a monetary aggregate can serve as a useful predictor of inflation, using recent developments in the principle of cointegrated variables. M2 but not M1 is cointegrated with relevant price, transactions, and rate of return variables. However, deviations of M2 from its long-run equilibrium value do not significantly enhance inflation forecasts based on conventional output-gap models, a result that stands in contrast to the Federal Reserve’s P* relationship. Nevertheless, changes in M2 do contain information about future inflation, consistent with the view that the demand for money reflects the forward-looking behavior of private agents.