We study the response of consumption and saving decisions of rationally inattentive individuals to changes in monetary policy in the laboratory. First, we theoretically characterize the choices of a rationally inattentive agent processing information about the interest rate. Then, we design an experiment with induced inattention to test for the predictions of the model, contrasting them to the full information case. Consistent with the predictions, experimental subjects (a) increase attention when utility gains exceed cognitive costs of tracking the policy rate and decrease savings when their perceived economic outlook deteriorates; (b) respond to Delphic, but not Odyssean, forms of forward guidance. These findings agree with recent empirical evidence on monetary policy effects on consumption behavior in U.S. and internationally.
Civelli, A., Deck, C., & Tutino, A. (2020). Rationally inattentive savers and monetary policy changes: A laboratory experiment. ESI Working Paper 20-02. https://digitalcommons.chapman.edu/esi_working_papers/295/