Relative Goods' Prices, Pure Inflation, and The Phillips Correlation

Ricardo Reis, Mark W. Watson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

66 Scopus citations


This paper uses a dynamic factor model for the quarterly changes in consumption goods' prices in the United States since 1959 to separate them into three independent components: idiosyncratic relativeprice changes, a low-dimensional index of aggregate relative-price changes, and an index of equiproportional changes in all inflation rates that we label "pure" inflation. We use the estimates to answertwo questions. First, what share of the variability of inflation is associated with each component, and how are they related to conventional measures of monetary policy and relative-price shocks? Second, what drives the Phillips correlation between inflation and measures of real activity? (JEL E21, E23, E31, E52).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)128-157
Number of pages30
JournalAmerican Economic Journal: Macroeconomics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 1 2010

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Economics, Econometrics and Finance(all)


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