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Non-convexities in quantitative general equilibrium studies of business cycles

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  • Edward C. Prescott

Abstract

This paper reviews the role of micro non-convexities in the study of business cycles. One important non-convexity arises because an individual can work only one workweek length in a given week. The implication of this non-convexity is that the aggregate intertemporal elasticity of labor supply is large and the principal margin of adjustment is in the number employed-not in the hours per person employed-as observed. The paper also reviews a business cycle model with an occasionally binding capacity constraint. This model better mimics business cycle fluctuations than the standard real business cycle model. Aggregation in the presence of micro non-convexities is key in the model.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis in its series Staff Report with number 312.

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Date of creation: 2003
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedmsr:312

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Keywords: Business cycles ; Equilibrium (Economics) ; Econometric models ; Labor supply;

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  1. Douglas Gollin, 2001. "Getting Income Shares Right," Department of Economics Working Papers 2001-11, Department of Economics, Williams College.
  2. Khan, Aubhik & Thomas, Julia K., 2003. "Nonconvex factor adjustments in equilibrium business cycle models: do nonlinearities matter?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(2), pages 331-360, March.
  3. Ellen R. McGrattan & Edward C. Prescott, 2001. "Taxes, regulations, and asset prices," Working Papers 610, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  4. Robert J. Hodrick & Edward Prescott, 1981. "Post-War U.S. Business Cycles: An Empirical Investigation," Discussion Papers 451, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  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. Fernando Alvarez & Andrew Atkeson & Patrick J. Kehoe, 2002. "Money, Interest Rates, and Exchange Rates with Endogenously Segmented Markets," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 110(1), pages 73-112, February.
  7. Ricardo J. Caballero & Eduardo M.R.A. Engel, 1991. "Dynamic (S,s) Economies," NBER Working Papers 3734, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Finn E. Kydland & Scott Freeman, 2000. "Monetary Aggregates and Output," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(5), pages 1125-1135, December.
  9. Timothy J. Kehoe & David K. Levine & Edward Prescott, 2000. "Lotteries, Sunspots and Incentive Constraints," Levine's Working Paper Archive 1974, David K. Levine.
  10. Terry J. Fitzgerald, 1996. "Work schedules, wages, and employment in a general equilibrium model with team production," Working Paper 9613, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
  11. Andrew B. Abel & Janice C. Eberly, 1995. "Optimal Investment with Costly Reversibility," NBER Working Papers 5091, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Russell Cooper & John Haltiwanger & Laura Power, 1995. "Machine Replacement and the Business Cycle: Lumps and Bumps," NBER Working Papers 5260, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Arnold C. Harberger, 1968. "A Landmark in the Annals of Taxation," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 1(s1), pages 183-194, February.
  14. Victoria Osuna & Jose-Victor Rios-Rull, 2003. "Implementing the 35 Hour Workweek by Means of Overtime Taxation," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 6(1), pages 179-206, January.
  15. Richard Rogerson, 2010. "Indivisible Labor, Lotteries and Equilibrium," Levine's Working Paper Archive 250, David K. Levine.
  16. Shoven, John B. & Whalley, John, 1972. "A general equilibrium calculation of the effects of differential taxation of income from capital in the U.S," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 1(3-4), pages 281-321, November.
  17. Karl Shell & Randall Wright, 2010. "Indivisibilities, Lotteries and Sunspot Equilibria," Levine's Working Paper Archive 2061, David K. Levine.
  18. Edward C Prescott & Robert M Townsend, 1997. "General Competitive Analysis in an Economy with Private Information," Levine's Working Paper Archive 1578, David K. Levine.
  19. Gary Hansen, 2010. "Indivisible Labor and the Business Cycle," Levine's Working Paper Archive 233, David K. Levine.
  20. Lucas, Robert E, Jr & Rapping, Leonard A, 1969. "Real Wages, Employment, and Inflation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 77(5), pages 721-54, Sept./Oct.
  21. Prescott, Edward C., 1986. "Theory ahead of business-cycle measurement," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 11-44, January.
  22. Giuseppe Bertola & Ricardo J. Caballero, 1991. "Irreversibility and Aggregate Investment," NBER Working Papers 3865, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  23. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1982. "Time to Build and Aggregate Fluctuations," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(6), pages 1345-70, November.
  24. Gary D. Hansen & Edward C. Prescott, 2005. "Capacity constraints, asymmetries, and the business cycle," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 8(4), pages 850-865, October.
  25. Jorgenson, Dale W & Yun, Kun-Young, 1990. "Tax Reform and U.S. Economic Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(5), pages S151-93, October.
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Cited by:
  1. Francois Gourio, 2007. "Disasters and Recoveries: A Note on the Barro-Rietz Explanation of the Equity Premium Puzzle," Boston University - Department of Economics - Working Papers Series WP2007-007, Boston University - Department of Economics.
  2. Alexander Ueberfeldt, 2006. "Working Time over the 20th Century," Working Papers 06-18, Bank of Canada.
  3. Nishimura, Kazuo & Rudnicki, Ryszard & Stachurski, John, 2006. "Stochastic optimal growth with nonconvexities," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 74-96, February.

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  1. Recursive Macroeconomic Theory

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