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The importance of intangible capital for the transmission of financial shocks

Author

Listed:
  • Jose Ignacio Lopez

    (Universidad de los Andes)

  • Virginia Olivella

    (Banque de France)

Abstract

This paper studies the role of intangible capital in the transmission of financial shocks in a general equilibrium model with two types of capital, tangible and intangible, and labor and financial frictions. We find that intangible capital, which cannot be used by financially constrained entrepreneurs as collateral, is key to generate labor market volatility in response to financial shocks. When hit by an adverse financial shock, entrepreneurs prioritize investment in pledgeable assets to offset the tightening of financial conditions. This results in a strong cutback in intangible investment, which in turn leads to a decline in the marginal product of labor, vacancies and employment. In an alternative specification—one without intangible capital—when hit by an adverse financial shock, entrepreneurs instead fund tangible investments by reducing their consumption. As a result, capital and the marginal product of labor fall less than in the model with intangible assets, resulting in a smaller decline of employment and output. (Copyright: Elsevier)

Suggested Citation

  • Jose Ignacio Lopez & Virginia Olivella, 2018. "The importance of intangible capital for the transmission of financial shocks," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 30, pages 223-238, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:red:issued:17-331
    DOI: 10.1016/j.red.2018.04.004
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Financial shocks; Intangible assets; Business cycles; Employment volatility;

    JEL classification:

    • E24 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Employment; Unemployment; Wages; Intergenerational Income Distribution; Aggregate Human Capital; Aggregate Labor Productivity
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • E44 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy

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