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Vector autoregression evidence on monetarism: another look at the robustness debate

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  • Richard M. Todd
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    Abstract

    This paper is a case study of the use of vector autoregression (VAR) models to test economic theories. It focuses on the work of Christopher A. Sims, who in 1980 found that relationships in economic data generated by a small VAR model were inconsistent with those implied by a simple form of monetarist theory. The paper describes the work of researchers who criticized Sims' results as not robust and Sims' response to these critics. The paper reexamines all of this work by estimating hundreds of variations of Sims' model. The paper concludes that both Sims and his critics are right: Sims' conclusion about monetarism is robust, but some of his other statistical results are not. In general, the paper concludes that VAR models can be used to test theories, but that any relationships they uncover in the data must be carefully checked for robustness.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis in its journal Quarterly Review.

    Volume (Year): (1990)
    Issue (Month): Spr ()
    Pages: 19-37

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    Handle: RePEc:fip:fedmqr:y:1990:i:spr:p:19-37:n:v.14no.2

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    Related research

    Keywords: Vector autoregression ; Monetary theory;

    References

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    1. Charles H. Whiteman & William Roberds, 1990. "Monetary aggregates as monetary targets: a statistical investigation," Working Paper 90-7, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
    2. Sims, Christopher A, 1980. "Macroeconomics and Reality," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(1), pages 1-48, January.
    3. Runkle, David E, 1987. "Vector Autoregressions and Reality," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 5(4), pages 437-42, October.
    4. Christiano, Lawrence J. & Eichenbaum, Martin, 1987. "Temporal aggregation and structural inference in macroeconomics," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 26(1), pages 63-130, January.
    5. Runkle, David E, 1987. "Vector Autoregressions and Reality: Reply," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 5(4), pages 454, October.
    6. McCallum, Bennett T., 1983. "A reconsideration of Sims' evidence concerning monetarism," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 13(2-3), pages 167-171.
    7. David E. Runkle, 1987. "Vector autoregressions and reality," Staff Report 107, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
    8. Bernanke, Ben S., 1986. "Alternative explanations of the money-income correlation," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 49-99, January.
    9. Cooley, Thomas F. & Leroy, Stephen F., 1985. "Atheoretical macroeconometrics: A critique," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(3), pages 283-308, November.
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    Cited by:
    1. Kandil, Magda, 2005. "Money, interest, and prices: Some international evidence," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 129-147.
    2. Mohammed I Ansari & Ira N Gang, 1999. "Liberalization Policy: ‘Fits & Starts’ or Gradual Change in India," Comparative Economic Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 41(4), pages 23-46, December.
    3. Vilasuso, Jon, 1999. "The Liquidity Effect and the Operating Procedure of the Federal Reserve," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 443-461, July.
    4. Peter C.B. Phillips, 1992. "Bayes Methods for Trending Multiple Time Series with an Empirical Application to the US Economy," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1025, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
    5. Peter C.B. Phillips, 1995. "Impulse Response and Forecast Error Variance Asymptotics in Nonstationary VAR's," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1102, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
    6. Hafer, R. W. & Kutan, Ali M., 2001. "Detrending and the money-output link: International evidence," ZEI Working Papers B 19-2001, ZEI - Center for European Integration Studies, University of Bonn.
    7. Ansari, M. I., 1996. "Monetary vs. fiscal policy: Some evidence from vector autoregression for India," Journal of Asian Economics, Elsevier, vol. 7(4), pages 677-698.
    8. Choi, Jae-Young & Ratti, Ronald A., 2000. "The Predictive Power of Alternative Indicators of Monetary Policy," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 22(4), pages 581-610, October.
    9. Kamas, Linda, 1995. "Monetary policy and inflation under the crawling peg: Some evidence from VARs for Colombia," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(1), pages 145-161, February.
    10. Gerald Carlino & Robert DeFina, 1997. "The differential regional effects of monetary policy: evidence from the U.S. States," Working Papers 97-12, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.

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