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Investment Dispersion and the Business Cycle

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  • R?diger Bachmann
  • Christian Bayer

Abstract

The cross-sectional dispersion of firm-level investment rates is procyclical. This makes investment rates different from productivity, output, and employment growth, which have countercyclical dispersions. A calibrated heterogeneous-firm business cycle model with nonconvex capital adjustment costs and countercyclical dispersion of firm-level productivity shocks replicates these facts and produces a correlation between investment dispersion and aggregate output of 0.53, close to 0.45 in the data. We find that small shocks to the dispersion of productivity, which in the model constitutes firm risk, suffice to generate the mildly procyclical investment dispersion in the data but do not produce serious business cycles.

Suggested Citation

  • R?diger Bachmann & Christian Bayer, 2014. "Investment Dispersion and the Business Cycle," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(4), pages 1392-1416, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:104:y:2014:i:4:p:1392-1416
    Note: DOI: 10.1257/aer.104.4.1392
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D42 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Monopoly
    • D92 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics - - - Intertemporal Firm Choice, Investment, Capacity, and Financing
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • G31 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Capital Budgeting; Fixed Investment and Inventory Studies
    • G32 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Financing Policy; Financial Risk and Risk Management; Capital and Ownership Structure; Value of Firms; Goodwill

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