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Capital Adjustment Patterns in Manufacturing Plants

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  • Mark E. Doms

    (Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System)

  • Timothy Dunne

    (Department of Economics, University of Oklahoma and Office of the Chief Economist, U.S. Census Bureau)

Abstract

A common result from altering several fundamental assumptions of the neoclassical investment model with convex adjustment costs is that investment may occur in lumpy episodes. This paper takes a step back and asks "How lumpy is investment?" We answer this question by documenting the distributions of investment and capital adjustment for a sample of over 13,700 manufacturing plants drawn from over 300 four-digit industries. We find that many plants do undergo large investment episodes; however, there is tremendous variation across plants in their capital accumulation patterns. This paper explores how the variation in capital accumulation patterns vary by observable plant and firm characteristics, and how large investment episodes at the plant level transmit into fluctuations in aggregate investment. (Copyright: Elsevier)

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File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1006/redy.1998.0011
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics in its journal Review of Economic Dynamics.

Volume (Year): 1 (1998)
Issue (Month): 2 (April)
Pages: 409-429

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Handle: RePEc:red:issued:v:1:y:1998:i:2:p:409-429

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  1. Russell Cooper & John Haltiwanger & Laura Power, 1995. "Machine Replacement and the Business Cycle: Lumps and Bumps," Papers 0062, Boston University - Industry Studies Programme.
  2. Caballero, Ricardo J & Engel, Eduardo M R A, 1993. "Microeconomic Adjustment Hazards and Aggregate Dynamics," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 108(2), pages 359-83, May.
  3. Jeffrey R. Campbell & Jonas D.M. Fisher, 1998. "Aggregate employment fluctuations with microeconomic asymmetries," Working Paper Series, Macroeconomic Issues WP-96-17, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  4. Rust, John, 1987. "Optimal Replacement of GMC Bus Engines: An Empirical Model of Harold Zurcher," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(5), pages 999-1033, September.
  5. Russell Cooper & John Haltiwanger, 1993. "The Aggregate Implications of Machine Replacement: Theory and Evidence," NBER Working Papers 3552, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Ricardo J. Caballero, 1997. "Aggregate Investment," NBER Working Papers 6264, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Ricardo J. Caballero & Eduardo M.R.A. Engel & John Haltiwanger, 1995. "Aggregate Employment Dynamics: Building From Microeconomic Evidence," NBER Working Papers 5042, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Abel, Andrew B & Eberly, Janice C, 1994. "A Unified Model of Investment under Uncertainty," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(5), pages 1369-84, December.
  9. Davis, Steven J & Haltiwanger, John C, 1992. "Gross Job Creation, Gross Job Destruction, and Employment Reallocation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 107(3), pages 819-63, August.
  10. Bertola, Guiseppe & Caballero, Ricardo J, 1994. "Irreversibility and Aggregate Investment," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(2), pages 223-46, April.
  11. repec:fth:coluec:465 is not listed on IDEAS
  12. Bahk, Byong-Hong & Gort, Michael, 1993. "Decomposing Learning by Doing in New Plants," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(4), pages 561-83, August.
  13. Ricardo J. Caballero & Eduardo M. R. A. Engel & John C. Haltiwanger, 1995. "Plant-Level Adjustment and Aggregate Investment Dynamics," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 26(2), pages 1-54.
  14. Andrew B. Abel & Olivier J. Blanchard, 1987. "The Present Value of Profits and Cyclical Movements in Investment," NBER Working Papers 1122, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Avinash Dixit, 1992. "Investment and Hysteresis," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 6(1), pages 107-132, Winter.
  16. Jason G. Cummins & Kevin A. Hassett & R. Glenn Hubbard, 1994. "A Reconsideration of Investment Behavior Using Tax Reforms as Natural Experiments," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 25(2), pages 1-74.
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