IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

Consumer misperceptions, uncertain fundamentals, and the business cycle

  • Hürtgen, Patrick

This paper estimates the importance of shocks to consumer misperceptions “noise shocks” for U.S. business cycle fluctuations. I embed imperfect information as in Lorenzoni (2009) into a Smets and Wouters (2007)-type DSGE model. Agents only observe aggregate productivity and a signal about the permanent component contaminated with noise. Based on this information agents form beliefs about the temporary and the permanent component of productivity. Shocks to the signal (noise shocks) trigger aggregate fluctuations unrelated to changes in productivity. Bayesian estimation shows that noise shocks explain up to 14 percent of output and up to 25 percent of consumption fluctuations. Nominal rigidities and the specification of the monetary policy rule are crucial for the importance of noise shocks. These features help to resolve conflicting results in the previous literature.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control.

Volume (Year): 40 (2014)
Issue (Month): C ()
Pages: 279-292

in new window

Handle: RePEc:eee:dyncon:v:40:y:2014:i:c:p:279-292
Contact details of provider: Web page:

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Robert B. Barsky & Eric R. Sims, 2009. "Information, Animal Spirits, and the Meaning of Innovations in Consumer Confidence," NBER Working Papers 15049, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Beaudry, Paul & Portier, Franck, 2003. "Stock Prices, News and Economic Fluctuations," CEPR Discussion Papers 3844, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Jordi Galí & Frank Smets & Rafael Wouters, 2012. "Unemployment in an Estimated New Keynesian Model," National Bank of Poland Working Papers 106, National Bank of Poland, Economic Institute.
  4. Fabio Milani, 2005. "Expectations, Learning and Macroeconomic Persistence," Macroeconomics 0510022, EconWPA.
  5. Giorgio Primiceri & Andrea Tambalotti & Alejandro Justiniano, 2011. "Is there a trade-off between inflation and output stabilization?," 2011 Meeting Papers 280, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  6. Eric Leeper & Todd Walker & Susan Yang SHu-Chun, 2009. "Fiscal Foresight And Information Flows," Caepr Working Papers 2009-001, Center for Applied Economics and Policy Research, Economics Department, Indiana University Bloomington.
  7. Andrew Levin & Christopher J. Erceg & Dale W. Henderson, 1999. "Optimal Monetary Policy with Staggered Wage and Price Contracts," Computing in Economics and Finance 1999 1151, Society for Computational Economics.
  8. Susanto Basu & John Fernald & Miles Kimball, 1998. "Are technology improvements contractionary?," International Finance Discussion Papers 625, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  9. Schmitt-Grohé, Stephanie & Uribe, Martín, 2012. "What's News in Business Cycles," CEPR Discussion Papers 8984, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum & Charles Evans, 2001. "Nominal Rigidities and the Dynamic Effects of a Shock to Monetary Policy," NBER Working Papers 8403, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Ellen R. McGrattan & Patrick J. Kehoe & V. V. Chari, 2008. "New Keynesian models: not yet useful for policy analysis," Working Papers 664, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  12. Eric M. Leeper & Todd B. Walker & Shu-Chun Susan Yang, 2011. "Foresight and Information Flows," NBER Working Papers 16951, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Del Negro, Marco & Schorfheide, Frank, 2008. "Forming priors for DSGE models (and how it affects the assessment of nominal rigidities)," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(7), pages 1191-1208, October.
  14. Jean-Paul L'Huillier & Guido Lorenzoni & Olivier J. Blanchard, 2009. "News, Noise and Fluctuations: An Empirical Exploration," 2009 Meeting Papers 99, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  15. Fernandez-Villaverde, Jesus & Francisco Rubio-Ramirez, Juan, 2004. "Comparing dynamic equilibrium models to data: a Bayesian approach," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 123(1), pages 153-187, November.
  16. Alejandro Justiniano & Giorgio Primiceri & Andrea Tambalotti, 2011. "Investment Shocks and the Relative Price of Investment," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 14(1), pages 101-121, January.
  17. Bartosz Mackowiak & Mirko Wiederholt, 2004. "Optimal Sticky Prices under Rational Inattention," SFB 649 Discussion Papers SFB649DP2005-040, Sonderforschungsbereich 649, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany, revised Jul 2005.
  18. Blanchard, O., 1993. "Consumption and the Recession of 1990-1991," Working papers 93-5, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  19. Mark Bils & Peter J. Klenow, 2004. "Some Evidence on the Importance of Sticky Prices," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(5), pages 947-985, October.
  20. Alejandro Justiniano & Giorgio E. Primiceri & Andrea Tambalotti, 2008. "Investment shocks and business cycles," Staff Reports 322, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  21. Stefano Eusepi & Bruce Preston, 2011. "Expectations, Learning, and Business Cycle Fluctuations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(6), pages 2844-72, October.
  22. Smets, Frank & Wouters, Rafael, 2007. "Shocks and Frictions in US Business Cycles: A Bayesian DSGE Approach," CEPR Discussion Papers 6112, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  23. John Geweke, 1998. "Using simulation methods for Bayesian econometric models: inference, development, and communication," Staff Report 249, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  24. V.V. Chari & Patrick J. Kehoe & Ellen R. McGrattan, 1998. "Can sticky price models generate volatile and persistent real exchange rates?," Staff Report 223, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  25. Pearlman, Joseph G., 1992. "Reputational and nonreputational policies under partial information," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 16(2), pages 339-357, April.
  26. Beaudry, Paul & Portier, Franck, 2004. "An exploration into Pigou's theory of cycles," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(6), pages 1183-1216, September.
  27. Stephanie Schmitt-Grohe & Martin Uribe, 2008. "What's News in Business Cycles," NBER Working Papers 14215, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  28. Svensson, Lars E. O. & Woodford, Michael, 2004. "Indicator variables for optimal policy under asymmetric information," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 661-690, January.
  29. Calvo, Guillermo A., 1983. "Staggered prices in a utility-maximizing framework," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 383-398, September.
  30. Hansen, Bruce E., 1995. "TIME SERIES ANALYSIS James D. Hamilton Princeton University Press, 1994," Econometric Theory, Cambridge University Press, vol. 11(03), pages 625-630, June.
  31. Sargent, Thomas J, 1989. "Two Models of Measurements and the Investment Accelerator," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(2), pages 251-87, April.
  32. Sims, Christopher A, 2002. "Solving Linear Rational Expectations Models," Computational Economics, Society for Computational Economics, vol. 20(1-2), pages 1-20, October.
  33. Jesús Fernández-Villaverde, 2010. "The econometrics of DSGE models," SERIEs, Spanish Economic Association, vol. 1(1), pages 3-49, March.
  34. Nir Jaimovich & Sergio Rebelo, 2006. "Can News About the Future Drive the Business Cycle?," 2006 Meeting Papers 31, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  35. Eric M. Leeper & Nora Traum & Todd B. Walker, 2011. "Clearing Up the Fiscal Multiplier Morass," NBER Working Papers 17444, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  36. Guido Lorenzoni, 2006. "A Theory of Demand Shocks," NBER Working Papers 12477, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  37. Klein, Paul, 2000. "Using the generalized Schur form to solve a multivariate linear rational expectations model," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 24(10), pages 1405-1423, September.
  38. Eric M. Leeper & Michael Plante & Nora Traum, 2009. "Dynamics of Fiscal Financing in the United States," NBER Working Papers 15160, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  39. Nikolay Iskrev, 2009. "Local Identification in DSGE Models," Working Papers w200907, Banco de Portugal, Economics and Research Department.
  40. Baxter, Brad & Graham, Liam & Wright, Stephen, 2011. "Invertible and non-invertible information sets in linear rational expectations models," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 295-311, March.
  41. Sungbae An & Frank Schorfheide, 2007. "Bayesian Analysis of DSGE Models," Econometric Reviews, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 26(2-4), pages 113-172.
  42. Sims, Christopher A., 2003. "Implications of rational inattention," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(3), pages 665-690, April.
  43. Rabanal, Pau & Rubio-Ramirez, Juan F., 2005. "Comparing New Keynesian models of the business cycle: A Bayesian approach," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(6), pages 1151-1166, September.
  44. Sungbae An & Frank Schorfheide, 2007. "Bayesian Analysis of DSGE Models—Rejoinder," Econometric Reviews, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 26(2-4), pages 211-219.
  45. Stephanie Schmitt‐Grohé & Martín Uribe, 2012. "What's News in Business Cycles," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 80(6), pages 2733-2764, November.
  46. Miles S. Kimball & Matthew D. Shapiro, 2008. "Labor Supply: Are the Income and Substitution Effects Both Large or Both Small?," NBER Working Papers 14208, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  47. Pearlman, Joseph & Currie, David & Levine, Paul, 1986. "Rational expectations models with partial information," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 3(2), pages 90-105, April.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:dyncon:v:40:y:2014:i:c:p:279-292. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Zhang, Lei)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.