nep-dge New Economics Papers
on Dynamic General Equilibrium
Issue of 2007‒06‒02
ten papers chosen by
Christian Zimmermann
University of Connecticut

  1. Implications of Search Frictions: Matching Aggregate and Establishment-level Observations By Russell Cooper; John Haltiwanger; Jonathan L. Willis
  2. Money Velocity in an Endogenous Growth Business Cycle with Credit Shocks By Benk, Szilárd; Gillman, Max; Kejak, Michal
  3. Explaining Asset Prices with External Habits and Wage Rigidities in a DSGE Model. By Harald Uhlig
  4. Nominal versus Indexed Debt: A Quantitative Horse Race By Laura Alfaro; Fabio Kanczuk
  5. The Effects of Labor Market Conditions on Working Time: the US-EU Experience By Michelacci, Claudio; Pijoan-Mas, Josep
  6. Debt Maturity: Is Long-Term Debt Optimal? By Laura Alfaro; Fabio Kanczuk
  7. Precautionary Demand for Foreign Assets in Sudden Stop Economies: An Assessment of the New Merchantilism By Ceyhun Bora Durdu; Enrique G. Mendoza; Marco E. Terrones
  8. Productivity shocks and Optimal Monetary Policy in a Unionized Labor Market Economy By Fabrizio Mattesini; Lorenza Rossi
  9. The Role of Consumer's Risk Aversion on Price Redigity By Sergio A. Lago Alves; Mirta N. S. Bugarin
  10. Robust Maximization of Consumption with Logarithmic Utility By Daniel Hernández-Hernández; Alexander Schied

  1. By: Russell Cooper; John Haltiwanger; Jonathan L. Willis
    Abstract: This paper studies hours, employment, vacancies and unemployment at micro and macro levels. It is built around a set of facts concerning the variability of unemployment and vacancies in the aggregate and, at the establishment level, the distribution of net employment growth and the comovement of hours and employment growth. A search model with frictions in hiring and firing is used as a framework to understand these observations. Notable features of this search model include non-convex costs of posting vacancies, establishment level profitability shocks and a contracting framework that determines the response of hours and wages to shocks. The search friction creates an endogenous, cyclical adjustment cost. We specify and estimate the parameters of the search model using simulated method of moments to match establishment-level and aggregate observations. The estimated search model is able to capture both the aggregate and establishment-level facts.
    JEL: E24 J6
    Date: 2007–05
  2. By: Benk, Szilárd; Gillman, Max (Cardiff Business School); Kejak, Michal
    Abstract: The explanation of velocity in neoclassical monetary business cycle models relies on a goods productivity shocks to mimic the data's procyclic velocity feature; money shocks are not important; and the financial sector plays no role. This paper sets the model within endogenous growth, adds exchange credit shocks, and finds that money and credit shocks explain much of the velocity variation. The role of the shocks varies across sub-periods in an intuitive fashion. Endogenous growth is key to the construction of the money and credit shocks since these have similar effects on velocity, but opposite effects upon growth. The model matches the data's average velocity and simulates most of the velocity volatility that is found in the data. Its underlying money demand is Cagan-like in its interest elasticity, so that money and credit shocks cause greater velocity variation the higher is the nominal interest rate.
    Keywords: Velocity; business cycle; credit shocks; endogenous growth
    JEL: E13 E32 E44
    Date: 2007–05
  3. By: Harald Uhlig
    Abstract: In this paper, I investigate the scope of a model with exogenous habit formation - or `catching up with the Joneses`, see Abel (1990) - to generate the observed equity premium as well as other key macroeconomic facts. Along the way, I derive restrictions for four out of eight parameters for a rather general preference specification of habit formation by imposing consistency with long-run growth, the leisure share, the aggregate Frisch elasticity of labor supply, the observed risk-free rate, and the observed Sharpe ratio. I show that a DSGE model with (exogenous and lagged) habits in both leisure and consumption, but not necessarily with additional persistence, is well capable of matching the observed asset market facts as well as macro facts, provided one allows for moderate real wage stickiness and provided one allows for sufficient curvature on preferences, as dictated by the asset market observations. Without wage stickiness, delivery on both the asset pricing implications as well as the macroeconomic implications seems to be much harder.
    Keywords: asset pricing, wage rigidity, habit formation, Frisch elasticity, Sharpe ratio, log-linear approximation
    JEL: E24 E30 G12
    Date: 2007–05
  4. By: Laura Alfaro; Fabio Kanczuk
    Abstract: The main arguments in favor and against nominal and indexed debt are the incentive to default through inflation versus hedging against unforeseen shocks. We model and calibrate these arguments to assess their quantitative importance. We use a dynamic equilibrium model with tax distortion, government outlays uncertainty, and contingent-debt service. Our framework also recognizes that contingent debt can be associated with incentive problems and lack of commitment. Thus, the benefits of unexpected inflation are tempered by higher interest rates. We obtain that costs from inflation more than offset the benefits from reducing tax distortions. We further discuss sustainability of nominal debt in developing (volatile) countries.
    JEL: E6 H63
    Date: 2007–05
  5. By: Michelacci, Claudio; Pijoan-Mas, Josep
    Abstract: We consider a labor market search model where, by working longer hours, individuals acquire greater skills and thereby obtain better jobs. We show that job inequality, which leads to within-skill wage differences, gives incentives to work longer hours. By contrast, a higher probability of losing jobs, a longer duration of unemployment, and in general a less tight labor market discourage working time. We show that the different evolution of labor market conditions in the US and in Continental Europe over the last three decades can quantitatively explain the diverging evolution of the number of hours worked per employee across the two sides of the Atlantic. It can also explain why the fraction of prime age male workers working very long hours has increased substantially in the US, after reverting a trend of secular decline.
    Keywords: human capital; search; unemployment; wage inequality; working hours
    JEL: E24 G31 J31
    Date: 2007–05
  6. By: Laura Alfaro; Fabio Kanczuk
    Abstract: We model and calibrate the arguments in favor and against short-term and long-term debt. These arguments broadly include: maturity premium, sustainability, and service smoothing. We use a dynamic equilibrium model with tax distortions and government outlays uncertainty, and model maturity as the fraction of debt that needs to be rolled over every period. In the model, the benefits of defaulting are tempered by higher future interest rates. We then calibrate our artificial economy and solve for the optimal debt maturity for Brazil as an example of a developing country and the U.S. as an example of a mature economy. We obtain that the calibrated costs from defaulting on long-term debt more than offset costs associated with short-term debt. Therefore, short-term debt implies higher welfare levels.
    JEL: E62 F34 H63
    Date: 2007–05
  7. By: Ceyhun Bora Durdu; Enrique G. Mendoza; Marco E. Terrones
    Abstract: Financial globalization was off to a rocky start in emerging economies hit by Sudden Stops since the mid 1990s. Foreign reserves grew very rapidly during this period, and hence it is often argued that we live in the era of a New Merchantilism in which large stocks of reserves are a war-chest for defense against Sudden Stops. We conduct a quantitative assessment of this argument using a stochastic intertemporal equilibrium framework with incomplete asset markets in which precautionary saving affects foreign assets via three mechanisms: business cycle volatility, financial globalization, and Sudden Stop risk. In this framework, Sudden Stops are an equilibrium outcome produced by an endogenous credit constraint that triggers Irving Fisher's debt-deflation mechanism. Our results show that financial globalization and Sudden Stop risk are plausible explanations of the observed surge in reserves but business cycle volatility is not. In fact, business cycle volatility has declined in the post-globalization period. These results hold whether we use the formulation of intertemporal preferences of the Bewley-Aiyagari-Hugget class of precautionary savings models or the Uzawa-Epstein setup with endogenous time preference.
    JEL: D52 E44 F32 F41
    Date: 2007–05
  8. By: Fabrizio Mattesini (Università di Roma 2); Lorenza Rossi (DISCE, Università Cattolica)
    Abstract: In this paper we analyze a general equilibrium dynamic stochastic New Keynesian model characterized by labor indivisibilities, unemployment and a unionized labor market. The presence of monopoly unions introduces real wage rigidities in the model. We show that as in Blanchard Galì (2005) the so called "divine coincidence" does not hold and a trade-off between inflation stabilization and the output stabilization arises. In particular, a productivity shock has a negative effect on inflation, while a reservation-wage shock has an effect of the same size but with the opposite sign. We derive a welfare-based objective function for the Central Bank as a second order Taylor approximation of the expected utility of the economy's representative household, and we analyze optimal monetary policy under discretion and under commitment. Under discretion a negative productivity shock and a positive exogenous wage shock will require an increase in the nominal interest rate. An operational instrument rule, in this case, will satisfy the Taylor principle, but will also require that the nominal interest rate does not necessarily respond one to one to an increase in the interest rate that supports the efficient equilibrium. The results of the model are consistent with a well known empirical regularity in macroeconomics, i.e. that employment volatility is relatively larger than real wage volatility.
    Keywords: Optimal Monetary Policy, Monopolist Union, Labor Indivisibility
    JEL: E24 E32 E50 J23 J51
    Date: 2007–03
  9. By: Sergio A. Lago Alves; Mirta N. S. Bugarin
    Abstract: This paper aims to contribute to the research agenda on the sources of price rigidity. Based on broadly accepted assumptions on the behavior of economic agents, we show that firms’ competition can lead to the adoption of sticky prices as a sub-game perfect equilibrium strategy to optimally deal with consumers’ risk aversion, even if firms have no adjustment costs. To this end, we build a model economy based on consumption centers with several complete markets and relax some traditional assumptions used in standard monetary policy models by assuming that households have imperfect information about the inefficient time-varying cost shocks faced by the .rms. Furthermore, we assume that the timing of events is such that, at every period, consumers have access to the actual prices prevailing in the market only after choosing a particular consumption center. Since such choices under uncertainty may decrease the expected utilities of risk-averse consumers, competitive firms adopt some degree of price stickiness in order to minimize the price uncertainty and "attract more customers".
    Date: 2006–11
  10. By: Daniel Hernández-Hernández; Alexander Schied
    Abstract: We analyze the stochastic control approach to the dynamic maximization of the robust utility of consumption and investment. The robust utility functionals are defined in terms of logarithmic utility and a dynamically consistent convex risk measure. The underlying market is modeled by a diffusion process whose coefficients are driven by an external stochastic factor process. Our main results give conditions on the minimal penalty function of the robust utility functional under which the value function of our problem can be identified with the unique classical solution of a quasilinear PDE within a class of functions satisfying certain growth conditions.
    Keywords: Robust utility maximization, optimal consumption, stochastic factor model, stochastic control, convex risk measure, dynamic consistency, Hamilton-Jacobi-Bellman equation
    JEL: G11 D81
    Date: 2007–05

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