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Housing Markets and Current Account Dynamics

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  • Gete, Pedro

Abstract

This paper makes a theoretical and an empirical contribution to the debate on what caused the "global imbalances". On the empirical side, I provide different types of evidence to support that housing demand shocks (shocks to the aggregate marginal rate of substitution between housing and tradables) help to explain the global imbalances. On the theory side, I show that shocks to the demand for housing generate trade deficits without need for the standard ingredients used by others to model housing (wealth effects or trade in capital goods). I model housing as a durable and nontradable good. Countries import tradable goods during periods when more domestic labor is devoted to produce nontradables to smooth consumption between tradables and nontradables. Housing booms are larger if the country can run a trade deficit because the deficit lowers the opportunity cost of building, which is the foregone consumption of tradable goods due to reallocation of labor to the construction sector. Concerning the empirical evidence, I first document that over the last decade there has been a strong cross-country correlation between housing variables and current account dynamics. Second, I show that using the cross-country dynamics of employment in construction as the explanatory variable, the model generates current account dynamics matching recent global imbalances. Finally, I use sign restrictions implied by the model to estimate a vector autoregression and identify the effects of housing demand shocks on the U.S. trade deficit. The results suggest that housing shocks matter for current account dynamics.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 20957.

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Date of creation: Jun 2009
Date of revision: 24 Feb 2010
Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:20957

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Related research

Keywords: Housing; Current Account; Global Imbalances; Sign Restrictions; Two Country Models; Two Sector Models;

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References

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  1. Richard Clarida & Jordi Galí & Mark Gertler, 2000. "Monetary Policy Rules And Macroeconomic Stability: Evidence And Some Theory," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 115(1), pages 147-180, February.
  2. Matteo Iacoviello & Stefano Neri, 2008. "Housing market spillovers: Evidence from an estimated DSGE model," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 659, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  3. Aizenman, Joshua & Jinjarak, Yothin, 2009. "Current account patterns and national real estate markets," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(2), pages 75-89, September.
  4. Sims, Christopher A & Stock, James H & Watson, Mark W, 1990. "Inference in Linear Time Series Models with Some Unit Roots," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 58(1), pages 113-44, January.
  5. Edward E. Leamer, 2007. "Housing IS the Business Cycle," NBER Working Papers 13428, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Caballero, Ricardo J. & Farhi, Emmanuel & Gourinchas, Pierre-Olivier, 2008. "An Equilibrium Model of "Global Imbalances" and Low Interest Rates," Scholarly Articles 3229094, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  7. Juan F. Rubio-Ramirez & Daniel Waggoner & Tao Zha, 2006. "Markov-Switching Structural Vector Autoregressions: Theory and Application," Computing in Economics and Finance 2006 69, Society for Computational Economics.
  8. Matsuyama, Kiminori, 1990. "Residential investment and the current account," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(1-2), pages 137-153, February.
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  12. Erceg, Christopher & Levin, Andrew, 2006. "Optimal monetary policy with durable consumption goods," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(7), pages 1341-1359, October.
  13. John N. Muellbauer, 2007. "Housing, credit and consumer expenditure," Proceedings - Economic Policy Symposium - Jackson Hole, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, pages 267- 334.
  14. Bems, Rudolfs & Dedola, Luca & Smets, Frank, 2007. "US imbalances: The role of technology and policy," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 26(4), pages 523-545, June.
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  16. Pau Rabanal & Oriol Aspachs-Bracons, 2009. "The Drivers of Housing Cycles in Spain," IMF Working Papers 09/203, International Monetary Fund.
  17. Fabio Canova & Gianni De Nicolo, 2000. "Monetary disturbances matter for business fluctuations in the G-7," International Finance Discussion Papers 660, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  18. Nobuhiro Kiyotaki & Alexander Michaelides & Kalin Nikolov, 2010. "Winners and Losers in House Markets," Working Papers 2010-5, Central Bank of Cyprus.
  19. Nobuhiro Kiyotaki & Alexander Michaelides & Kalin Nikolov, 2007. " Winners and Losers in Housing Markets," CDMA Conference Paper Series 0705, Centre for Dynamic Macroeconomic Analysis.
  20. Dedola, Luca & Neri, Stefano, 2007. "What does a technology shock do? A VAR analysis with model-based sign restrictions," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(2), pages 512-549, March.
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  22. Joseph Gruber & Steven Kamin, 2009. "Do Differences in Financial Development Explain the Global Pattern of Current Account Imbalances?," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 17(4), pages 667-688, 09.
  23. James A. Kahn, 2008. "What drives housing prices?," Staff Reports 345, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  24. Nathalie Girouard & Mike Kennedy & Paul van den Noord & Christophe André, 2006. "Recent House Price Developments: The Role of Fundamentals," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 475, OECD Publishing.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Klaus Adam & Pei Kuang & Albert Marcet, 2011. "House Price Booms and the Current Account," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2011, Volume 26, pages 77-122 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Jack Favilukis & David Kohn & Sydney C. Ludvigson & Stijn Van Nieuwerburgh, 2012. "International Capital Flows and House Prices: Theory and Evidence," NBER Chapters, in: Housing and the Financial Crisis, pages 235-299 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Christophe André, 2010. "A Bird's Eye View of OECD Housing Markets," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 746, OECD Publishing.
  4. Hyun Song Shin, 2012. "Adapting Macropudential Policies to Global Liquidity Conditions," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 671, Central Bank of Chile.
  5. Andrea Ferrero, 2011. "House Prices Booms and Current Account Deficits," 2011 Meeting Papers 1386, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  6. Christophe Andre & Luis A. Gil-Alana & Rangan Gupta, 2013. "Comovement in Euro Area Housing Prices: A Fractional Cointegration Approach," Working Papers 201359, University of Pretoria, Department of Economics.
  7. Andrea Ferrero, 2012. "House price booms, current account deficits, and low interest rates," Staff Reports 541, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  8. Paul Bergin, 2011. "Asset price booms and current account deficits," FRBSF Economic Letter, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue dec.5.
  9. Maria Teresa Punzi, 2013. "Housing Market and Current Account Imbalances in the International Economy," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 21(4), pages 601-613, 09.
  10. Jane Dokko & Brian Doyle & Michael T. Kiley & Jinill Kim & Shane Sherlund & Jae Sim & Skander Van den Heuvel, 2009. "Monetary policy and the housing bubble," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2009-49, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  11. Obstfeld, Maurice & Rogoff, Kenneth, 2009. "Global imbalances and the financial crisis: products of common causes," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Oct, pages 131-172.
  12. Aizenman, Joshua & Jinjarak, Yothin, 2013. "Real Estate Valuation, Current Account, and Credit Growth Patterns Before and After the 2008–2009 Crisis," ADBI Working Papers 429, Asian Development Bank Institute.
  13. François Geerolf & Thomas Grjebine, 2013. "House Prices Drive Current Accounts: Evidence From Property Tax Variations," Working Papers 2013-18, CEPII research center.
  14. Hyun Song Shin & Kwanho Shin, 2011. "Procyclicality and Monetary Aggregates," NBER Working Papers 16836, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Tomasz Wieladek & Sergi Lanau, 2012. "Financial Regulation and the Current Account," IMF Working Papers 12/98, International Monetary Fund.
  16. Geerolf, François & Grjebine, Thomas, 2013. "House Prices Drive Current Accounts: Evidence from Property Tax Variations," CEPREMAP Working Papers (Docweb) 1315, CEPREMAP.

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