GEM- Great Expectations: Macroeconomic Implications of Forecasting Behavior

Luigi Iovino

Luigi Iovino
Principal Investigator

October 2023-September 2028
Grant Agreement ID: 101087978


The goal of this proposal is to advance the research frontier on expectations formation and their economic impact. The proposal consists of three related projects that, through the provision of novel empirical evidence and the design of a new theoretical framework, can guide future research and better inform policy decisions. Recent empirical evidence suggests that expectations react to shocks sluggishly, but—one might argue—this may only be the case because data was gathered under stable economic conditions. We plan to explore the hypothesis that expectations quickly adapt and “de-anchor” in periods of economic turmoil. If, as we conjecture, expectations are state dependent, then a better understanding of the conditions under which stickiness persists is critical for policy. We exploit survey data on a larger-than-usual set of countries and uncover new properties of expectations. How should central banks communicate to the public?

Should countries promote financial literacy? Expectations’ data helps us answer these questions by indirectly revealing the models that agents use to make forecasts. We leverage the theory of Bayesian networks to build a theoretical framework in which a fraction of less sophisticated agents fails to consider a subset of relevant macroeconomic relationships. We discipline our model using novel evidence on cross-variable properties of expectations and deliver new, actionable lessons for policy and policy communication. The recent debate on the role of monetary policy in speeding up the green transition has attracted much attention. Yet, the full extent to which monetary policy affects green firms is still unknown. We investigate, both empirically and theoretically, the impact of interest-rate expectations on investment by clean vs. dirty firms and innovation in clean technologies. Our preliminary evidence suggests that conventional monetary policy and forward guidance may have a sizable and long-lasting impact on the environment.


Articles on Bocconi Knowledge: 

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This project has been funded by the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Horizon Europe research and innovation programme.