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Leverage and deepening business cycle skewness

Author

Listed:
  • Henrik Jensen

    () (University Of Copenhagen and CEPR)

  • Ivan Petrella

    () (University of Warwick and CEPR)

  • Søren Hove Ravn

    () (University of Copenhagen)

  • Emiliano Santoro

    () (University of Copenhagen)

Abstract

We document that the U.S. economy has been characterized by an increasingly negative business cycle asymmetry over the last three decades. This fi nding can be explained by the concurrent increase in the fi nancial leverage of households and fi rms. To support this view, we devise and estimate a dynamic general equilibrium model with collateralized borrowing and occasionally binding credit constraints. Higher leverage increases the likelihood that constraints become slack in the face of expansionary shocks, while contractionary shocks are further amplifi ed due to binding constraints. As a result, booms become progressively smoother and more prolonged than busts. We are therefore able to reconcile a more negatively skewed business cycle with the Great Moderation in cyclical volatility. Finally, in line with recent empirical evidence, fi nancially-driven expansions lead to deeper contractions, as compared with equally-sized non-fi nancial expansions.

Suggested Citation

  • Henrik Jensen & Ivan Petrella & Søren Hove Ravn & Emiliano Santoro, 2017. "Leverage and deepening business cycle skewness," Working Papers 1732, Banco de España;Working Papers Homepage.
  • Handle: RePEc:bde:wpaper:1732
    as

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    File URL: http://www.bde.es/f/webbde/SES/Secciones/Publicaciones/PublicacionesSeriadas/DocumentosTrabajo/17/Fich/dt1732e.pdf
    File Function: First version, September 2017
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Juan Antolin-Diaz & Thomas Drechsel & Ivan Petrella, 2017. "Tracking the Slowdown in Long-Run GDP Growth," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 99(2), pages 343-356, May.
    2. Boz, Emine & Mendoza, Enrique G., 2014. "Financial innovation, the discovery of risk, and the U.S. credit crisis," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(C), pages 1-22.
    3. Jean Boivin & Marc P. Giannoni, 2006. "Has Monetary Policy Become More Effective?," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 88(3), pages 445-462, August.
    4. Thomas W. Bates & Kathleen M. Kahle & René M. Stulz, 2009. "Why Do U.S. Firms Hold So Much More Cash than They Used To?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 64(5), pages 1985-2021, October.
    5. Matthew Chambers & Carlos Garriga & Don E. Schlagenhauf, 2009. "Accounting For Changes In The Homeownership Rate," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 50(3), pages 677-726, August.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

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    Blog mentions

    As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
    1. Leverage and deepening business cycle skewness
      by Christian Zimmermann in NEP-DGE blog on 2017-10-17 05:29:42

    More about this item

    Keywords

    credit constraints; business cycles; skewness; deleveraging;

    JEL classification:

    • 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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