Norges Bank

Staff Memo

Robustifying optimal monetary policy in Norway

Mathis Mæhlum
Staff Memo


Monetary policy is usually modelled as either simple rules or optimal policy. While the former are often seen as incomplete and unrealistic for practical policymaking, the latter can yield catastrophy should the policymaker's macroeconomic model be wrong. I seek to "robustify" the optimal policy from Norges Bank's reference model, NEMO, when there are alternative possible models with very different structural properties. This is done by punishing deviations from a simple interest rate rule in a "modified" welfare loss function. I consider several simple rule for this purpose, among them the simple Taylor rule and several rules that are optimized for the alternative models. The combination of optimal policy and simple rules turn out to be effective for avoiding large welfare losses in the alternative models and creating an acceptable trade-off. In addition, the method is flexible and can easily be implemented by central banks.

Staff Memos present reports and documentation written by staff members and affiliates of Norges Bank, the central bank of Norway. Views and conclusions expressed in Staff Memos should not be taken to represent the views of Norges Bank.

ISSN 1504-2596 (online)

Published 18 June 2012 08:20
Published 18 June 2012 08:20