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The welfare cost of macroeconomic uncertainty in the post-war period

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  • Issler, Joao Victor
  • de Mello Franco-Neto, Afonso Arinos
  • de Carvalho Guillen, Osmani Teixeira

Abstract

Lucas (1987) has shown the surprising result that the welfare cost of business cycles is quite small. Using standard assumptions on preferences and a fully-fledged econometric model we computed the welfare costs of macroeconomic uncertainty for the post-WWII era using the multivariate Beveridge-Nelson decomposition for trends and cycles, which considers not only business-cycle uncertainty but also uncertainty from the stochastic trend in consumption. The post-WWII period is relatively quiet, with the welfare costs of uncertainty being about 0.9% of per-capita consumption. Although changing the decomposition method changed substantially initial results, the welfare cost of uncertainty is qualitatively small in the post-WWII era - about $175.00 a year per-capita in the U.S. We also computed the marginal welfare cost of macroeconomic uncertainty using this same technique. It is about twice as large as the welfare cost - $350.00 a year per-capita.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Economics Letters.

Volume (Year): 98 (2008)
Issue (Month): 2 (February)
Pages: 167-175

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Handle: RePEc:eee:ecolet:v:98:y:2008:i:2:p:167-175

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  2. Renato G. Fl�res & Maria Paula Fontoura & Rog�rio Guerra Santos, 2007. "Foreign Direct Investment Spillovers in Portugal: Additional Lessons from a Country Study," European Journal of Development Research, Taylor and Francis Journals, vol. 19(3), pages 372-390.
  3. Cysne, Rubens Penha, 2006. "Income Inequality in a Job-Search Model With Heterogeneous Discount Factors (Revised Version, Forthcoming 2006, Revista Economia)," Economics Working Papers (Ensaios Economicos da EPGE) 611, FGV/EPGE Escola Brasileira de Economia e Finanças, Getulio Vargas Foundation (Brazil).
  4. Luiz Renato Lima & Breno Pinheiro Néri, 2006. "Comparing Value-at-Risk Methodologies," Computing in Economics and Finance 2006 1, Society for Computational Economics.
  5. Torres-Martínez, Juan Pablo & Araújo, Aloísio Pessoa de & Páscoa, Mario Rui, 2006. "Bubbles, Collateral and Monetary Equilibrium," Economics Working Papers (Ensaios Economicos da EPGE) 614, FGV/EPGE Escola Brasileira de Economia e Finanças, Getulio Vargas Foundation (Brazil).
  6. Zhijie Xiao & Luiz Renato Lima, 2007. "Testing Covariance Stationarity," Econometric Reviews, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 26(6), pages 643-667.
  7. Flôres Junior, Renato Galvão & Watanuki, Masakazu, 2006. "Integration Options for Mercosul - An Investigation Using the AMIDA Model," Economics Working Papers (Ensaios Economicos da EPGE) 610, FGV/EPGE Escola Brasileira de Economia e Finanças, Getulio Vargas Foundation (Brazil).
  8. Guillén, Osmani Teixeira de Carvalho & Issler, João Victor & Franco-Neto, Afonso Arinos de Mello, 2014. "On the welfare costs of business-cycle fluctuations and economic-growth variation in the 20th century and beyond," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 39(C), pages 62-78.
  9. Monteiro, Paulo Klinger, 2004. "First-Price auction symmetric equlibria with a general distribution," Economics Working Papers (Ensaios Economicos da EPGE) 568, FGV/EPGE Escola Brasileira de Economia e Finanças, Getulio Vargas Foundation (Brazil).
  10. Flôres Junior, Renato Galvão, 2006. "The Diversity of Diversity: further methodological considerations on the use of the concept in cultural economics," Economics Working Papers (Ensaios Economicos da EPGE) 626, FGV/EPGE Escola Brasileira de Economia e Finanças, Getulio Vargas Foundation (Brazil).
  11. Araújo, Fabio & Issler, João Victor & Fernandes, Marcelo, 2006. "A Stochastic Discount Factor Approach to Asset Pricing Using Panel Data," Economics Working Papers (Ensaios Economicos da EPGE) 628, FGV/EPGE Escola Brasileira de Economia e Finanças, Getulio Vargas Foundation (Brazil).
  12. Cysne, Rubens Penha, 2006. "An Intra-Household Approach to the Welfare Costs of Inflation (Revised Version, Forthcoming 2006, Estudos Econômicos)," Economics Working Papers (Ensaios Economicos da EPGE) 612, FGV/EPGE Escola Brasileira de Economia e Finanças, Getulio Vargas Foundation (Brazil).

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