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The failure to predict the Great Recession. The failure of academic economics? A view focusing on the role of credit

Author

Listed:
  • Maria Dolores Gadea Rivas

    () (University of Zaragoza)

  • Gabriel Perez-Quiros

    () (Banco de España y CEPR)

Abstract

Much has been written about why economists failed to predict the latest financial and real crisis. Reading the recent literature, it seems that the crisis was so obvious that economists must have been blind when looking at data not to see it coming. In this paper, we analyze whether such claims are justified by looking at one of the most cited and relevant variables in this analysis, the now infamous credit to GDP chart. We compare the conclusions reached in the literature after the crisis with the results that could have been drawn from an ex ante analysis. We show that, even though credit affects the business cycle in both the expansion and the recession phases, this effect is almost negligible and impossible to exploit from a policymaker’s point of view.

Suggested Citation

  • Maria Dolores Gadea Rivas & Gabriel Perez-Quiros, 2012. "The failure to predict the Great Recession. The failure of academic economics? A view focusing on the role of credit," Working Papers 1240, Banco de España;Working Papers Homepage.
  • Handle: RePEc:bde:wpaper:1240
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Alvaro Ortiz Vidal-Abarca & Alfonso Ugarte Ruiz, 2015. "Introducing a New Early Warning System Indicator (EWSI) of banking crises," Working Papers 1502, BBVA Bank, Economic Research Department.
    2. André K. Anundsen & Karsten Gerdrup & Frank Hansen & Kasper Kragh‐Sørensen, 2016. "Bubbles and Crises: The Role of House Prices and Credit," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 31(7), pages 1291-1311, November.
    3. Jordà, Òscar, 2014. "Assessing the historical role of credit: Business cycles, financial crises and the legacy of Charles S. Peirce," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 30(3), pages 729-740.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    business cycles; forecasting; financial crisis;

    JEL classification:

    • C22 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Time-Series Models; Dynamic Quantile Regressions; Dynamic Treatment Effect Models; Diffusion Processes
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles

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