Discussion Paper Series 2014-E-9

The Zero Lower Bound and Parameter Bias in an Estimated DSGE Model

Yasuo Hirose, Atsushi Inoue

This paper examines how and to what extent parameter estimates can be biased in a dynamic stochastic general equilibrium (DSGE) model that omits the zero lower bound (ZLB) constraint on the nominal interest rate. Our Monte Carlo experiments using a standard sticky-price DSGE model show that no significant bias is detected in parameter estimates and that the estimated impulse response functions are quite similar to the true ones. However, as the probability of hitting the ZLB increases, the parameter bias becomes larger and therefore leads to substantial differences between the estimated and true impulse responses. It is also demonstrated that the model missing the ZLB causes biased estimates of structural shocks even with the virtually unbiased parameters.

Keywords: Zero lower bound; DSGE model; Parameter bias; Bayesian estimation

Views expressed in the paper are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the Bank of Japan or Institute for Monetary and Economic Studies.

Copyright © 2014 Bank of Japan All Rights Reserved.

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