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International business cycles and the relative price of investment goods

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  • Parantap Basu
  • Christoph Thoenissen

Abstract

Is the relative price of investment goods a good proxy for investment specific technology? We model this relative price in a flexible price international economy with two fundamental shocks, namely, the total factor productivity (TFP) shock and the investment-specific technology (IST) shock. We show that the one-to-one correspondence between the IST shock and the relative price of investment goods breaks down in an international economy because of the short-run correlation between the terms of trade and the relative price of investment goods. The data congruent negative correlation between the investment rate and the relative price of investment goods thus does not necessarily reflect decline in investment frictions (rise in IST), as suggested by many studies. A calibration experiment with the US data demonstrates that such an inverse relation between rate of investment and the relative price of investment goods basically reflects the positive effect of TFP on the terms of trade for a broad range of economies where the home bias in consumption exceeds investment and there is a sizable adjustment cost of investment.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Canadian Economics Association in its journal Canadian Journal of Economics.

Volume (Year): 44 (2011)
Issue (Month): 2 (May)
Pages: 580-606

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Handle: RePEc:cje:issued:v:44:y:2011:i:2:p:580-606

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  1. Alejandro Justiniano & Giorgio E. Primiceri & Andrea Tambalotti, 2009. "Investment shocks and the relative price of investment," Staff Reports 411, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
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  3. Greenwood, Jeremy & Hercowitz, Zvi & Krusell, Per, 2000. "The role of investment-specific technological change in the business cycle," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 44(1), pages 91-115, January.
  4. Charles Nolan & Christoph Thoenissen, 2008. "Financial shocks and the US business cycle," CDMA Working Paper Series 200810, Centre for Dynamic Macroeconomic Analysis.
  5. David K. Backus & Patrick J. Kehoe & Finn E. Kydland, 1992. "Dynamics of the trade balance and the terms of trade: the S-curve," Working Paper 9211, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
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  7. Zheng Liu & Daniel F. Waggoner & Tao Zha, 2008. "Sources of the Great Moderation: Shocks, Frictions, or Monetary Policy?," Emory Economics 0811, Department of Economics, Emory University (Atlanta).
  8. Giancarlo CORSETTI & Luca DEDOLA & Sylvain LEDUC, 2003. "International Risk-Sharing and the Transmission of Productivity Shocks," Economics Working Papers ECO2003/22, European University Institute.
  9. Pierpaolo Benigno, 2009. "Price Stability with Imperfect Financial Integration," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 41(s1), pages 121-149, 02.
  10. Benigno, Gianluca & Thoenissen, Christoph, 2006. "Consumption and Real Exchange Rates with Incomplete Markets and Non-Traded Goods," CEPR Discussion Papers 5580, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  11. Heathcote, Jonathan & Perri, Fabrizio, 1999. "Financial Autarky and International Business Cycles," Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 320, Stockholm School of Economics, revised 30 Apr 2000.
  12. King, Robert G & Watson, Mark W, 1998. "The Solution of Singular Linear Difference Systems under Rational Expectations," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 39(4), pages 1015-26, November.
  13. Boileau, Martin, 2002. "Trade in capital goods and investment-specific technical change," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 26(6), pages 963-984, June.
  14. Enders, Zeno & Müller, Gernot J., 2009. "On the international transmission of technology shocks," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 78(1), pages 45-59, June.
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Cited by:
  1. Gunes Kamber & Christoph Thoenissen, 2011. "Financial intermediation and the internationalbusiness cycle: The case of small countries with big banks," CAMA Working Papers 2011-22, Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.
  2. Punnoose Jacob & Gert Peersman, 2013. "Dissecting the dynamics of the US trade balance in an estimated equilibrium model," Reserve Bank of New Zealand Discussion Paper Series DP2013/04, Reserve Bank of New Zealand.
  3. Nadav Ben Zeev & Hashmat U. Khan, 2012. "Investment-Specific News Shocks and U.S. Business Cycles," Carleton Economic Papers 12-05, Carleton University, Department of Economics, revised 25 Feb 2013.
  4. Dmitriev, Alexandre & Roberts, Ivan, 2013. "The cost of adjustment: On comovement between the trade balance and the terms of trade," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 35(C), pages 689-700.

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