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On the contribution of technology shocks to business cycles

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  • S. Rao Aiyagari

Abstract

This article contends that the various measures of the contribution of technology shocks to business cycles calculated using the real business cycle modeling method are not corroborated. The article focuses on a different and much simpler method for calculating the contribution of technology shocks, which takes account of facts concerning the productivity/labor input correlation and the variability of labor input relative to output. Under several standard assumptions, the method predicts that the contribution of technology shocks must be large (at least 78 percent), that the labor supply elasticity need not be large to explain the observed fluctuation in labor input, and that the contribution of technology shocks can be estimated fairly precisely. The method also estimates that the contribution of technology shocks could be lower than 78 percent under alternative assumptions. ; Reprinted in the Quarterly Review, Summer 1997 (v. 21, no. 3)

Suggested Citation

  • S. Rao Aiyagari, 1994. "On the contribution of technology shocks to business cycles," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, issue Win, pages 22-34.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedmqr:y:1994:i:win:p:22-34:n:v.18no.1
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Wen, Yi, 2001. "Technology, Employment, and the Business Cycle: Do Technology Shocks Explain Aggregate Fluctuations? Comment," Working Papers 01-19, Cornell University, Center for Analytic Economics.
    2. Ghosh, Atish R. & Wolf, Holger C., 1996. "On the mark(s): Optimum currency areas in Germany," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 13(4), pages 561-573, October.
    3. Finn E. Kydland & Edward C. Prescott, 1996. "The Computational Experiment: An Econometric Tool," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 10(1), pages 69-85, Winter.
    4. Jang-Ting Guo & Kevin J. Lansing, 1994. "The welfare effects of tax simplification: a general-equilibrium analysis," Working Paper 9409, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
    5. Thomas F. Cooley & Gary D. Hansen, 1997. "Unanticipated money growth and the business cycle reconsidered," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, issue Nov, pages 624-652.
    6. Alison Butler & Michael R. Pakko, 1998. "R&D spending and cyclical fluctuations: putting the "technology" in technology shocks," Working Papers 1998-020, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
    7. Robert E. Lucas Jr., 2003. "Macroeconomic Priorities," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(1), pages 1-14, March.
    8. Smith, Gregor W. & Zin, Stanley E., 1997. "Real business-cycle realizations," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 47(1), pages 243-280, December.
    9. Wen, Yi, 1998. "Capacity Utilization under Increasing Returns to Scale," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 81(1), pages 7-36, July.
    10. King, Robert G. & Rebelo, Sergio T., 1999. "Resuscitating real business cycles," Handbook of Macroeconomics,in: J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Macroeconomics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 14, pages 927-1007 Elsevier.
    11. Huffman, Gregory W. & Wynne, Mark A., 1999. "The role of intratemporal adjustment costs in a multisector economy," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 317-350, April.
    12. Frederick van der Ploeg, 2005. "Back to Keynes?," CESifo Economic Studies, CESifo, vol. 51(4), pages 777-822.
    13. Gary Gorton & Guillermo Ordonez, 2014. "Crises and Productivity in Good Booms and in Bad Booms," PIER Working Paper Archive 14-008, Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania.
    14. Cooley, Thomas F. & Hansen, Gary D., 1998. "The role of monetary shocks in equilibrium business cycle theory: Three examples," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 42(3-5), pages 605-617, May.
    15. Kevin J. Lansing, 1994. "Optimal fiscal policy when public capital is productive: a business- cycle perspective," Working Paper 9406, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
    16. Cakici, S. Meral, 2011. "Financial integration and business cycles in a small open economy," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 30(7), pages 1280-1302.
    17. S. Rao Aiyagari, 1995. "Comments on Farmer and Guo's "the econometrics of indeterminacy: an applied study."," Staff Report 196, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
    18. Jang-Ting Guo & Kevin J. Lansing, 1994. "Tax structure, optimal fiscal policy, and the business cycle," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, issue Q IV, pages 2-14.
    19. Harold L. Cole & Lee E. Ohanian & Ron Leung, 2005. "Deflation and the International Great Depression: A Productivity Puzzle," NBER Working Papers 11237, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    20. Mary G. Finn, 1995. "Is "high" capacity utilization inflationary?," Economic Quarterly, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, issue Win, pages 1-16.
    21. Cakici, S. Meral, 2012. "Technology shocks under varying degrees of financial openness," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 232-245.

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    Keywords

    Business cycles ; Technology;

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