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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. Zheng Liu, 2009. "Sources of the Great Moderation: Shocks, Frictions, or Monetary Policy?," 2009 Meeting Papers 379, Society for Economic Dynamics.
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  9. 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.
  10. Greenwood, J. & Hercowitz, Z. & Krusell, P., 1998. "The Role of Investment-Specific Technological Change in the Business Cycle," RCER Working Papers 449, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
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  12. Alejandro Justiniano & Giorgio Primiceri & Andrea Tambalotti, 2011. "Investment Shocks and the Relative Price of Investment," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 14(1), pages 101-121, January.
  13. Jonas D. M. Fisher, 2006. "The Dynamic Effects of Neutral and Investment-Specific Technology Shocks," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 114(3), pages 413-451, June.
  14. 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.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Gunes Kamber & Christoph Thoenissen, 2013. "Financial exposure and the international transmission of financial shocks," CAMA Working Papers 2013-39, Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.
  2. Punnoose Jacob & Gert Peersman, 2012. "Dissecting the dynamics of the US trade balance in an estimated equilibrium model," Working Paper Research 226, National Bank of Belgium.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.

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