Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Bernanke Speech on Friday: A new roadmap for the Fed?

by Calculated Risk on 10/13/2010 12:00:00 AM

On Friday, Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke will speak at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston Conference "Monetary Policy Objectives and Tools in a Low-Inflation Environment".

Jon Hilsenrath at the WSJ has a preview: Fed Chief Gets Set to Apply Lessons of Japan's History

Mr. Bernanke is preparing for a potentially important policy speech Friday, when he could detail his thinking on the Fed's next steps ... The conference is a reprise of a 1999 conference at which Mr. Bernanke and other academics took Japanese officials to task for failing to get their economy moving.
Here is the 1999 paper that Hilsenrath mentions: From Ben Bernanke (1999): Japanese Monetary Policy: A Case of Self-Induced Paralysis?* (via Professor Krugman: Self-induced Paralysis)

There is quite a bit about deflation and monetary policy in his 1999 paper, including arguing for a higher inflation target of 3% to 4%. Bernanke even made some "helicopter drop" comments before his well known speech in 2002: Deflation: Making Sure "It" Doesn't Happen Here

On Friday, Bernanke might discuss possible future steps the Fed could take in addition to buying longer-term Treasury securities.