IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Fluctuations In Uncertainty

  • Nicholas Bloom

This review article tries to answer four questions: (i) what are the stylized facts about uncertainty over time; (ii) why does uncertainty vary; (iii) do fluctuations in uncertainty matter; and (iv) did higher uncertainty worsen the Great Recession of 2007-2009? On the first question both macro and micro uncertainty appears to rise sharply in recessions. On the second question the types of exogenous shocks like wars, financial panics and oil price jumps that cause recessions appear to directly increase uncertainty, and uncertainty also appears to endogenously rise further during recessions. On the third question, the evidence suggests uncertainty is damaging for short-run investment and hiring, but there is some evidence it may stimulate longer-run innovation. Finally, in terms of the Great Recession, the large jump in uncertainty in 2008 potentially accounted for about one third of the drop in GDP.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL: ftp://ftp2.census.gov/ces/wp/2014/CES-WP-14-17.pdf
File Function: First version, 2014
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau in its series Working Papers with number 14-17.

as
in new window

Length: 29 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2014
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cen:wpaper:14-17
Contact details of provider: Postal: 4600 Silver Hill Road, Washington, DC 20233
Phone: (301) 763-6460
Fax: (301) 763-5935
Web page: http://www.census.gov/ces
Email:


More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Stephen Davis & John Haltiwanger & Ron Jarmin & Javier Miranda, 2006. "Volatility and Dispersion in Business Growth Rates: Publicly Traded Versus Privately Held Firms," Working Papers 06-17, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
  2. Holger Kraft & Eduardo S. Schwartz & Farina Weiss, 2013. "Growth Options and Firm Valuation," NBER Working Papers 18836, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Steffen Elstner & Eric Sims & Ruediger Bachmann, 2010. "Uncertainty and Economic Activity: Evidence from Business Survey Data," 2010 Meeting Papers 614, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  4. Lubos Pastor & Pietro Veronesi, 2011. "Political Uncertainty and Risk Premia," Working Papers 2011-007, Becker Friedman Institute for Research In Economics.
  5. Eberly, Janice C, 1994. "Adjustment of Consumers' Durables Stocks: Evidence from Automobile Purchases," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(3), pages 403-36, June.
  6. Nick Bloom & Stephen Bond & John Van Reenen, 2006. "Uncertainty and Investment Dynamics," CEP Discussion Papers dp0739, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  7. Cosmin Ilut & Martin Schneider, 2012. "Ambiguous Business Cycles," Working Papers 12-06, Duke University, Department of Economics.
  8. Russell W. Cooper & John C. Haltiwanger, 2006. "On the Nature of Capital Adjustment Costs," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 73(3), pages 611-633.
  9. Van Nieuwerburgh, Stijn & Veldkamp, Laura, 2006. "Learning asymmetries in real business cycles," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(4), pages 753-772, May.
  10. Nicholas Bloom & Max Floetotto & Nir Jaimovich & Itay Saporta-Eksten & Stephen J. Terry, 2012. "Really Uncertain Business Cycles," NBER Working Papers 18245, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. John V. Leahy & Toni M. Whited, 1995. "The Effect of Uncertainty on Investment: Some Stylized Facts," NBER Working Papers 4986, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1982. "Time to Build and Aggregate Fluctuations," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(6), pages 1345-70, November.
  13. Fernández-Villaverde, Jesús & Guerron-Quintana, Pablo A. & Rubio-Ramírez, Juan Francisco & Uribe, Martín, 2009. "Risk Matters: The Real Effects of Volatility Shocks," CEPR Discussion Papers 7264, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  14. Susanto Basu & Brent Bundick, 2012. "Uncertainty shocks in a model of effective demand," Working Papers 12-15, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.
  15. Guiso, Luigi & Parigi, Giuseppe, 1996. "Investment and Demand Uncertainty," CEPR Discussion Papers 1497, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  16. Hansen, Lars Peter & Sargent, Thomas J & Tallarini, Thomas D, Jr, 1999. "Robust Permanent Income and Pricing," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 66(4), pages 873-907, October.
  17. John Y. Campbell & Martin Lettau & Burton G. Malkiel & Yexiao Xu, 2000. "Have Individual Stocks Become More Volatile? An Empirical Exploration of Idiosyncratic Risk," NBER Working Papers 7590, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Robert G. King & Sergio T. Rebelo, 2000. "Resuscitating Real Business Cycles," RCER Working Papers 467, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
  19. Avinash K. Dixit & Robert S. Pindyck, 1994. "Investment under Uncertainty," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 5474.
  20. Matthias Kehrig, 2011. "The Cyclicality of Productivity Dispersion," 2011 Meeting Papers 484, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  21. Bachmann, Rüdiger & Bayer, Christian, 2013. "‘Wait-and-See’ business cycles?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(6), pages 704-719.
  22. Fatih Guvenen & Serdar Ozkan & Jae Song, 2014. "The Nature of Countercyclical Income Risk," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 122(3), pages 621 - 660.
  23. Andrew B. Abel & Janice C. Eberly, 1995. "Optimal Investment with Costly Reversibility," NBER Working Papers 5091, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  24. Miklos Koren & Silvana Tenreyro, 2005. "Volatility and development," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 3743, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  25. Garey Ramey & Valerie A. Ramey, 1994. "Cross-Country Evidence on the Link Between Volatility and Growth," NBER Working Papers 4959, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  26. Novy, Dennis & Taylor, Alan M., 2014. "Trade and Uncertainty," CEPR Discussion Papers 9888, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  27. Jesús Fernández-Villaverde & Pablo A. Guerrón-Quintana & Keith Kuester & Juan Rubio-Ramírez, 2011. "Fiscal Volatility Shocks and Economic Activity," NBER Working Papers 17317, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  28. Ruediger Bachmann & Giuseppe Moscarini, 2011. "Business Cycles and Endogenous Uncertainty," 2011 Meeting Papers 36, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  29. Jon Cohen & Michelle Alexopoulos, 2009. "Uncertain Times, Uncertain Measures," 2009 Meeting Papers 1211, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  30. Abel, Andrew B, 1983. "Optimal Investment under Uncertainty," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(1), pages 228-33, March.
  31. Bertola, Giuseppe & Guiso, Luigi & Pistaferri, Luigi, 2002. "Uncertainty and Consumer Durables Adjustment," CEPR Discussion Papers 3332, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  32. Bar-Ilan, Avner & Strange, William C, 1996. "Investment Lags," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(3), pages 610-22, June.
  33. Kyle Handley & Nuno Limão, 2012. "Trade and Investment under Policy Uncertainty: Theory and Firm Evidence," NBER Working Papers 17790, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  34. Christina D. Romer, 1988. "The Great Crash and the Onset of the Great Depression," NBER Working Papers 2639, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  35. Hartman, Richard, 1972. "The effects of price and cost uncertainty on investment," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 5(2), pages 258-266, October.
  36. James H. Stock & Mark W. Watson, 2002. "Has the Business Cycle Changed and Why?," NBER Working Papers 9127, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  37. Nicholas Bloom, 2007. "The Impact of Uncertainty Shocks," NBER Working Papers 13385, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  38. Kjetil Storesletten & Chris I. Telmer & Amir Yaron, 2004. "Cyclical Dynamics in Idiosyncratic Labor Market Risk," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(3), pages 695-717, June.
  39. Scott R. Baker & Nicholas Bloom, 2013. "Does Uncertainty Reduce Growth? Using Disasters as Natural Experiments," CEP Discussion Papers dp1243, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  40. Paddock, James L & Siegel, Daniel R & Smith, James L, 1988. "Option Valuation of Claims on Real Assets: The Case of Offshore Petroleum Leases," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 103(3), pages 479-508, August.
  41. Kyle Jurado & Sydney C. Ludvigson & Serena Ng, 2013. "Measuring Uncertainty," NBER Working Papers 19456, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  42. Hernan Moscoso Boedo & Pablo D'Erasmo, 2013. "Intangibles and Endogenous Firm Volatility over the Business Cycle," 2013 Meeting Papers 97, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  43. Rob Valletta & Leila Bengali, 2013. "What’s behind the increase in part-time work?," FRBSF Economic Letter, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue aug26.
  44. Joseph Vavra, 2011. "Inflation Dynamics and Time-Varying Uncertainty: New Evidence and an Ss Interpretation," 2011 Meeting Papers 126, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  45. Erik Hurst & Christopher Foote & John Leahy, 2000. "Testing the (S, s) Model," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(2), pages 116-119, May.
  46. Ravi Bansal & Amir Yaron, 2004. "Risks for the Long Run: A Potential Resolution of Asset Pricing Puzzles," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 59(4), pages 1481-1509, 08.
  47. Ben S. Bernanke, 1980. "Irreversibility, Uncertainty, and Cyclical Investment," NBER Working Papers 0502, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  48. Chiara Scotti, 2013. "Surprise and uncertainty indexes: real-time aggregation of real-activity macro surprises," International Finance Discussion Papers 1093, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  49. Ulrike Malmendier & Geoffrey Tate, 2005. "CEO Overconfidence and Corporate Investment," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 60(6), pages 2661-2700, December.
  50. Brennan, Michael J & Schwartz, Eduardo S, 1985. "Evaluating Natural Resource Investments," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 58(2), pages 135-57, April.
  51. G. William Schwert, 1988. "Why Does Stock Market Volatility Change Over Time?," NBER Working Papers 2798, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  52. Sylvain Leduc & Zheng Liu, 2012. "Uncertainty shocks are aggregate demand shocks," Working Paper Series 2012-10, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  53. McDonald, Robert & Siegel, Daniel, 1986. "The Value of Waiting to Invest," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 101(4), pages 707-27, November.
  54. Kraft, Holger & Schwartz, Eduardo & Weiss, Farina, 2013. "Growth options and firm valuation," SAFE Working Paper Series 6, Research Center SAFE - Sustainable Architecture for Finance in Europe, Goethe University Frankfurt.
  55. Valerie A. Ramey & Matthew D. Shapiro, 2001. "Displaced Capital: A Study of Aerospace Plant Closings," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 109(5), pages 958-992, October.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cen:wpaper:14-17. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Fariha Kamal)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.