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Sebastian Rast

Research Economist

De Nederlandsche Bank

I am a Research Economist in the Monetary Policy Department at De Nederlandsche Bank.

I obtained my PhD at the European University Institute in Florence under the supervision of Evi Pappa and Leonardo Melosi. During my PhD, I visited the University of California at Berkeley and have been a PhD Trainee in the Monetary Policy Strategy Division at the European Central Bank.

My research interests include macroeconomics, monetary policy, applied macroeconometrics and inflation expectations. You can find my CV here.

Note: This is my personal webpage and the views expressed here do not necessarily reflect the official position of De Nederlandsche Bank or the Eurosystem.

Education

  • PhD in Economics, 2022

    European University Institute

  • Visiting PhD student, 2019

    University of California, Berkeley

  • Master in Economics, 2015

    Barcelona Graduate School of Economics

  • BSc in Economics, 2014

    University of Mannheim

Working papers

Long-run inflation expectations

We estimate a model of long-run inflation expectations using panel data from the US Survey of Professional Forecasters (SPF). Professional forecasters are affected by common persistence bias and overconfidence in private information and these two deviations from rationality allow the model to account for the sluggish dynamics of expectations and the large and persistent disagreement in the SPF. Expectations respond negligibly to short-term changes in inflation and become less coordinated during the two zero-lower-bound episodes. At the end of 2022, the model correctly predicts that de-anchoring of US inflation expectations would not occur if inflation fell in 2023 as quickly as it actually did.

Central Bank Communication with the General Public: Survey Evidence from Germany

This paper studies the effect of different types of monetary policy announcements on household inflation expectations based on micro data from a survey of German households. As a key feature, interviews of the survey were conducted both shortly before and after monetary policy events. This timing provides a natural experiment to identify the immediate effects of policy announcements on household inflation expectations. The availability of the survey over a period of 15 years further allows me to exploit the time-series dimension to estimate the medium-term effects of policy announcements. Policy rate announcements lead to quick and significant adjustments in household inflation expectations. Announcements about forward guidance and quantitative easing, by contrast, have no or only smaller and delayed effects.

Uncovering the heterogenous effects of news shocks to underlying inflation

We identify in a SVAR shocks that best explain future movements in different measures of underlying inflation over a five-year horizon and label them as news augmented shocks to underlying inflation. Independently of the measure used, such shocks raise the nominal rate and inflation persistently, while they induce mild and short-lived increases in economic activity. The extracted inflation shocks have differential distributional effects. They increase significantly and persistently the consumption of mortgagors and home owners. Differently from the traditional monetary policy disturbances, news augmented shocks to underlying inflation induce a positive wealth effect for mortgagors and home owners, driven by a reduction in the real mortgage payments and a persistent increase in real house prices that they induce.