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An Expectations-Driven Interpretation of the "Great Recession"

The boom-years preceding the "Great Recession" were a time of rapid innovation in the financial industry. We explore the idea that both the boom and eventual bust emerged from overoptimistic ex-pectations of efficiency-gains in the financial sector. We treat the bankruptcy costs facing intermediaries in a costly state verification problem as a stochastic process, and model the boom-bust in terms of an unfulfilled news-shock where the expected fall in costs are eventually not realized. In response to a change in expectations only, the model generates a boom-bust cycle in aggregate activity, asset pricesand leverage, and a countercyclical credit spread.

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Paper provided by Carleton University, Department of Economics in its series Carleton Economic Papers with number 13-02.

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Length: 35 pages
Date of creation: 21 Feb 2013
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published: Carleton Economic Papers
Handle: RePEc:car:carecp:13-02
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  1. Townsend, Robert M., 1979. "Optimal contracts and competitive markets with costly state verification," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 265-293, October.
  2. Nir Jaimovich & Sergio Rebelo, 2009. "Can News about the Future Drive the Business Cycle?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(4), pages 1097-1118, September.
  3. Christopher M. Gunn & Alok Johri, 2009. "News and knowledge capital," Department of Economics Working Papers 2009-02, McMaster University.
  4. 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.
  5. Robert Amano & Malik Shukayev, 2012. "Risk Premium Shocks and the Zero Bound on Nominal Interest Rates," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 44(8), pages 1475-1505, December.
  6. Hashmat Khan & John Tsoukalas, 2012. "The Quantitative Importance of News Shocks in Estimated DSGE Models," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 44(8), pages 1535-1561, December.
  7. Andrew T. Levin & Fabio M. Natalucci, 2005. "The Magnitude and Cyclical Behavior of Financial Market Frictions," 2005 Meeting Papers 443, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  8. Christiano, Lawrence & Ilut, Cosmin & Motto, Roberto & Rostagno, Massimo, 2008. "Monetary policy and stock market boom-bust cycles," Working Paper Series 0955, European Central Bank.
  9. 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.
  10. Beaudry, Paul & Portier, Franck, 2003. "Stock Prices, News and Economic Fluctuations," CEPR Discussion Papers 3844, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  11. Christopher M. Gunn & Alok Johri, 2012. "News, Credit Spreads and Default Costs: An expectations-driven interpretation of the recent boom-bust cycle in the U.S," Department of Economics Working Papers 2012-04, McMaster University.
  12. Charles Nolan & Christoph Thoenissen, 2008. "Financial shocks and the US business cycle," CDMA Working Paper Series 200810, Centre for Dynamic Macroeconomic Analysis.
  13. Den Haan, Wouter & Kaltenbrunner, Georg, 2007. "Anticipated Growth and Business Cycles in Matching Models," CEPR Discussion Papers 6063, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  14. King, Robert G. & Plosser, Charles I. & Rebelo, Sergio T., 1988. "Production, growth and business cycles : II. New directions," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(2-3), pages 309-341.
  15. Urban Jermann & Vincenzo Quadrini, 2012. "Macroeconomic Effects of Financial Shocks," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(1), pages 238-71, February.
  16. Martin Uribe & Stephanie Schmitt-Grohe, 2009. "What's News in Business Cycles," 2009 Meeting Papers 135, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  17. Paul Beaudry & Amartya Lahiri, 2009. "Risk Allocation, Debt Fueled Expansion and Financial Crisis," NBER Working Papers 15110, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Christopher M. Gunn & Alok Johri, 2011. "News, Intermediation Efficiency and Expectations-driven Boom-bust Cycles," Department of Economics Working Papers 2011-02, McMaster University.
  19. Douglas Gale & Martin Hellwig, 1985. "Incentive-Compatible Debt Contracts: The One-Period Problem," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 52(4), pages 647-663.
  20. Carlstrom, Charles T & Fuerst, Timothy S, 1997. "Agency Costs, Net Worth, and Business Fluctuations: A Computable General Equilibrium Analysis," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(5), pages 893-910, December.
  21. Stephen D. Williamson, 1987. "Costly Monitoring, Loan Contracts, and Equilibrium Credit Rationing," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 102(1), pages 135-145.
  22. Gertler, Mark & Kiyotaki, Nobuhiro, 2010. "Financial Intermediation and Credit Policy in Business Cycle Analysis," Handbook of Monetary Economics, in: Benjamin M. Friedman & Michael Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Monetary Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 11, pages 547-599 Elsevier.
  23. King, Robert G. & Plosser, Charles I. & Rebelo, Sergio T., 1988. "Production, growth and business cycles : I. The basic neoclassical model," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(2-3), pages 195-232.
  24. Gertler, Mark & Karadi, Peter, 2011. "A model of unconventional monetary policy," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(1), pages 17-34, January.
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