Here’s Lars Christensen:
In fact I am pretty sure that if somebody had told Scott in July 2009 that from now on the Fed will follow a 4% NGDP target starting at the then level of NGDP then Scott would have applauded it. He might have said that he would have preferred a 5% trend rather than a 4% trend, but overall I think Scott would have been very happy to see a 4% NGDP target as official Fed policy.
Actually I would have been very upset, as indeed I was as soon as I saw what they were doing. I favored a policy of level targeting, which meant returning to the previous trend line.
Now of course if they had adopted a permanent policy of 4% NGDP targeting, I would have had the satisfaction of knowing that while the policy was inappropriate at the moment, in the long run it would be optimal. Alas, they did not do that. The recent 4% growth in NGDP is not the result of a credible policy regime, and hence won’t be maintained when there is a shock to the economy.
However I do agree with Lars that the Fed has done much better than the ECB.