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Indeterminacy and Sunspots with Constant Returns


  • Benhabib, Jess
  • Nishimura, Kazuo


We show that indeterminacy can easily arise in multi-sector models that have constant variable returns to scale and very small market imperfections. This is in sharp contrast to models that require increasing returns to generate indeterminacy, and which have been criticized on the basis of recent empirical estimates indicating that returns to scale are roughly constant, and that market imperfections are small. We also show that we can calibrate our constant returns model with sunspots, using standard parametrizations to produce a close match to the moments of aggregate consumption, investment, output and employment in U.S. data.
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Suggested Citation

  • Benhabib, Jess & Nishimura, Kazuo, 1998. "Indeterminacy and Sunspots with Constant Returns," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 81(1), pages 58-96, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jetheo:v:81:y:1998:i:1:p:58-96

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Benhabib, Jess & Farmer, Roger E. A., 1996. "Indeterminacy and sector-specific externalities," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 37(3), pages 421-443, June.
    2. repec:adr:anecst:y:1995:i:37-38:p:10 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Black, Fischer, 1974. "Uniqueness of the price level in monetary growth models with rational expectations," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 7(1), pages 53-65, January.
    4. Benhabib Jess & Rustichini Aldo, 1994. "Introduction to the Symposium on Growth, Fluctuations, and Sunspots: Confronting the Data," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 63(1), pages 1-18, June.
    5. Gali Jordi, 1994. "Monopolistic Competition, Business Cycles, and the Composition of Aggregate Demand," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 63(1), pages 73-96, June.
    6. Xie Danyang, 1994. "Divergence in Economic Performance: Transitional Dynamics with Multiple Equilibria," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 63(1), pages 97-112, June.
    7. Hall, Robert E, 1988. "The Relation between Price and Marginal Cost in U.S. Industry," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 96(5), pages 921-947, October.
    8. Benhabib, Jess & Perli, Roberto & Xie, Danyang, 1994. "Monopolistic competition, indeterminacy and growth," MPRA Paper 37411, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 1994.
    9. Farmer Roger E. A. & Guo Jang-Ting, 1994. "Real Business Cycles and the Animal Spirits Hypothesis," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 63(1), pages 42-72, June.
    10. Chatterjee, Satyajit & Cooper, Russell, 1989. "Multiplicity of Equilibria and Fluctuations in Dynamic Imperfectly Competitive Economies," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(2), pages 353-357, May.
    11. Farmer, Roger E. A. & Jang-Ting, Guo, 1995. "The econometrics of indeterminacy: an applied study," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 225-271, December.
    12. Benhabib, Jess & Nishimura, Kazuo, 1979. "The hopf bifurcation and the existence and stability of closed orbits in multisector models of optimal economic growth," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 421-444, December.
    13. Finn E. Kydland & Edward C. Prescott, 1990. "Business cycles: real facts and a monetary myth," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, issue Spr, pages 3-18.
    14. Burnside, Craig, 1996. "Production function regressions, returns to scale, and externalities," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 37(2-3), pages 177-201, April.
    15. Rotemberg, Julio J & Woodford, Michael, 1992. "Oligopolistic Pricing and the Effects of Aggregate Demand on Economic Activity," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(6), pages 1153-1207, December.
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    JEL classification:

    • E00 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General - - - General
    • E3 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles
    • O40 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - General


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