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An Equilibrium Model of Lumpy Housing Investment

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  • Matteo Iacoviello

    ()
    (Boston College)

  • Marina Pavan

    ()
    (The Geary Institute, University College Dublin)

Abstract

We formulate and solve a dynamic general equilibrium model with heterogeneous agents and lumpy housing adjustment at the household level. We use the model to ask a simple question: how does the microeconomic lumpiness of housing adjustment affect the equilibrium dynamic properties of aggregate consumption and investment? Our main conclusion is that lumpiness matters: in particular, lumpiness in housing adjustment (1) reduces the volatility of both housing and business investment; (2) increases the volatility of aggregate consumption; (3) increases the correlation of housing investment with business investment and with GDP. We also show that lumpiness of investment activity at the household level has small but significant aggregate implications, in contrast with the literature that shows that the aggregate effects of lumpy investment at the firm level are negligible.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by SIPI Spa in its journal Rivista di Politica Economica.

Volume (Year): 97 (2007)
Issue (Month): 2 (March-April)
Pages: 15-44

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Handle: RePEc:rpo:ripoec:v:97:y:2007:i:2:p:15-44

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  1. Jonas D. M. Fisher, 2007. "Why Does Household Investment Lead Business Investment over the Business Cycle?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 115, pages 141-168.
  2. Aiyagari, S Rao, 1994. "Uninsured Idiosyncratic Risk and Aggregate Saving," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 109(3), pages 659-84, August.
  3. Lutz Hendricks, 2005. "How Important is Discount Rate Heterogeneity for Wealth Inequality?," CESifo Working Paper Series 1604, CESifo Group Munich.
  4. Alon Brav & George M. Constantinides & Christopher C. Geczy, 2002. "Asset Pricing with Heterogeneous Consumers and Limited Participation: Empirical Evidence," NBER Working Papers 8822, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Julia K. Thomas, . "Is Lumpy Investment Relevant for the Business Cycle?," GSIA Working Papers 1998-E250, Carnegie Mellon University, Tepper School of Business.
  6. Quigley, John M., 2002. "Transactions Costs and Housing Markets," Berkeley Program on Housing and Urban Policy, Working Paper Series qt6pz8p6zt, Berkeley Program on Housing and Urban Policy.
  7. Yongsung Chang & Sun-Bin Kim, 2007. "Heterogeneity and Aggregation: Implications for Labor-Market Fluctuations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(5), pages 1939-1956, December.
  8. Silos, Pedro, 2007. "Housing, portfolio choice and the macroeconomy," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 31(8), pages 2774-2801, August.
  9. Antonia Díaz & Maria Jose Luengo-Prado, 2006. "The Wealth Distribution With Durable Goods," Economics Working Papers we067027, Universidad Carlos III, Departamento de Economía.
  10. Per Krusell & Anthony A. Smith, Jr., . "Income and Wealth Heterogeneity in the Macroeconomy," GSIA Working Papers 1997-37, Carnegie Mellon University, Tepper School of Business.
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Cited by:
  1. Fabio Verona, 2011. "Lumpy investment in sticky information general equilibrium," CEF.UP Working Papers 1102, Universidade do Porto, Faculdade de Economia do Porto.
  2. Verona, Fabio, 2013. "Investment dynamics with information costs," Research Discussion Papers 18/2013, Bank of Finland.

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