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Spurious welfare reversals in international business cycle models

  • Kim, Jinill
  • Kim, Sunghyun Henry

Papers on international business cycles have documented spurious welfare reversals: incomplete markets produce a higher level of welfare than the complete market. This paper first demonstrates how conventional linearization, as used in King, Plosser, and Rebelo (1988), can generate approximation errors that can result in welfare reversals. Using a two-country production economy, we argue that spurious welfare reversals are not only possible but also plausible under reasonable values for model parameters including labor supply elasticity. As a constructive alternative, this paper then proposes an approximation method that modifies the conventional linearization by a bias correction---the linear approximation around a `stochastic' steady state. We show that this method can be easily implemented and very well approximates the exact solution. The accuracy of the proposed method is by far better than that of the conventional linearization method and as good as that of a perturbation method involving a second-order expansion.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of International Economics.

Volume (Year): 60 (2003)
Issue (Month): 2 (August)
Pages: 471-500

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Handle: RePEc:eee:inecon:v:60:y:2003:i:2:p:471-500
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505552

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  1. David K. Backus & Patrick J. Kehoe & Finn E. Kydland, 1991. "International real business cycles," Staff Report 146, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  2. Jinill Kim, Sunghyun Kim, and Andrew Levin, 2001. "Patience, Persistence, and Welfare Costs of Incomplete Markets in Open Economies," Computing in Economics and Finance 2001 7, Society for Computational Economics.
  3. 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.
  4. Tesar, Linda L., 1995. "Evaluating the gains from international risksharing," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 95-143, June.
  5. Chris Otrok, 1999. "On Measuring the Welfare Cost of Business Cycles," Virginia Economics Online Papers 318, University of Virginia, Department of Economics.
  6. Jang-Ok Cho & Thomas F. Cooley & Louis Phaneuf, 1997. "The Welfare Cost of Nominal Wage Contracting," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 64(3), pages 465-484.
  7. McGrattan, Ellen R., 1994. "The macroeconomic effects of distortionary taxation," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(3), pages 573-601, June.
  8. Benigno, Gianluca & Benigno, Pierpaolo, 2001. "Monetary Policy Rules and the Exchange Rate," CEPR Discussion Papers 2807, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. John Y. CAMPBELL & Luis VICEIRA, 1998. "Who Should Buy Long-Term Bonds?," FAME Research Paper Series rp5, International Center for Financial Asset Management and Engineering.
  10. Mendoza, Enrique G, 1995. "The Terms of Trade, the Real Exchange Rate, and Economic Fluctuations," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 36(1), pages 101-37, February.
  11. Maurice Obstfeld & Kenneth Rogoff, 1998. "Risk and Exchange Rates," NBER Working Papers 6694, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Taylor, John B & Uhlig, Harald, 1990. "Solving Nonlinear Stochastic Growth Models: A Comparison of Alternative Solution Methods," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 8(1), pages 1-17, January.
  13. Eric Van Wincoop, 1998. "How big are potential welfare gains from international risksharing?," Staff Reports 37, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  14. Jess Gaspar & Kenneth L. Judd, 1997. "Solving Large Scale Rational Expectations Models," NBER Technical Working Papers 0207, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Michael Woodford, 2001. "Inflation Stabilization and Welfare," NBER Working Papers 8071, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Dale Henderson & Jinill Kim, 1999. "Exact Utilities under Alternative Monetary Rules in a Simple Macro Model with Optimizing Agents," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 6(4), pages 507-535, November.
  17. Collard, Fabrice & Juillard, Michel, 1999. "Accuracy of stochastic perturbuation methods: the case of asset pricing models," CEPREMAP Working Papers (Couverture Orange) 9922, CEPREMAP.
  18. Mark Bils & Yongsung Chang, 1999. "Wages and the Allocation of Hours and Effort," NBER Working Papers 7309, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Devereux, Michael B. & Saito, Makoto, 1997. "Growth and risk-sharing with incomplete international assets markets," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(3-4), pages 453-481, May.
  20. King, Robert G. & Plosser, Charles I. & Rebelo, Sergio T., 1988. "Production, growth and business cycles : II. New directions," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(2-3), pages 309-341.
  21. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1982. "Time to Build and Aggregate Fluctuations," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(6), pages 1345-70, November.
  22. repec:cup:macdyn:v:1:y:1997:i:1:p:45-75 is not listed on IDEAS
  23. Jinill Kim & Dale Henderson, 2002. "Inflation Targeting and Nominal Income Growth Targeting: When and Why Are They Suboptimal?," Computing in Economics and Finance 2002 59, Society for Computational Economics.
  24. Ireland, Peter N., 1997. "A small, structural, quarterly model for monetary policy evaluation," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 47(1), pages 83-108, December.
  25. Julio Rotemberg & Michael Woodford, 1997. "An Optimization-Based Econometric Framework for the Evaluation of Monetary Policy," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1997, Volume 12, pages 297-361 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  26. Henning Bohn, 1999. "Should the Social Security Trust Fund Hold Equities," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 2(3), pages 666-697, July.
  27. Harold L. Cole & Maurice Obstfeld, 1989. "Commodity Trade and International Risk Sharing: How Much Do Financial Markets Matter?," NBER Working Papers 3027, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  28. Wouter J. Den Haan & Albert Marcet, 1994. "Accuracy in Simulations," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 61(1), pages 3-17.
  29. Lewis, Karen K., 2000. "Why do stocks and consumption imply such different gains from international risk sharing?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(1), pages 1-35, October.
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