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Behavioral Theories of the Business Cycle

  • Nir Jaimovich
  • Sergio Rebelo

We explore the business cycle implications of expectation shocks and of two well-known psychological biases, optimismand overconfidence. The expectations of optimistic agents are biased toward good outcomes, whereas overconfident agentsoverestimate the precision of the signals that they receive. Both expectation shocks and overconfidence can increasebusiness-cycle volatility, while preserving the model's properties in terms of comovement and relative volatilities.In contrast, optimism is not a useful source of volatility in our model. (JEL: E3) (c) 2007 by the European Economic Association.

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Article provided by MIT Press in its journal Journal of the European Economic Association.

Volume (Year): 5 (2007)
Issue (Month): 2-3 (04-05)
Pages: 361-368

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Handle: RePEc:tpr:jeurec:v:5:y:2007:i:2-3:p:361-368
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  1. Markus K. Brunnermeier & Jonathan A. Parker, 2005. "Optimal Expectations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(4), pages 1092-1118, September.
  2. 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.
  3. Tauchen, George & Hussey, Robert, 1991. "Quadrature-Based Methods for Obtaining Approximate Solutions to Nonlinear Asset Pricing Models," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(2), pages 371-96, March.
  4. Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum & Charles L. Evans, 2001. "Nominal rigidities and the dynamic effects of a shock to monetary policy," Working Paper 0107, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
  5. Jean-Pierre DANTHINE & John B. DONALDSON & Thore JOHNSEN, 1997. "Productivity Growth, Consumer Confidence and the Business Cycle," Cahiers de Recherches Economiques du Département d'Econométrie et d'Economie politique (DEEP) 9711, Université de Lausanne, Faculté des HEC, DEEP.
  6. Söderlind, Paul, 2005. "C-CAPM without Ex Post Data," SIFR Research Report Series 39, Institute for Financial Research.
  7. Greenwood, J. & Hercowitz, Z. & Krusell, P., 1998. "The Role of Investment-Specific Technological Change in the Business Cycle," RCER Working Papers 449, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
  8. Nir Jaimovich & Sergio Rebelo, 2006. "Can News About the Future Drive the Business Cycle?," 2006 Meeting Papers 31, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  9. Christiano, Lawrence & Ilut, Cosmin & Motto, Roberto & Rostagno, Massimo, 2008. "Monetary policy and stock market boom-bust cycles," Working Paper Series 0955, European Central Bank.
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