IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/cpr/ceprdp/14559.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Disasters Everywhere: The Costs of Business Cycles Reconsidered

Author

Listed:
  • Taylor, Alan M.
  • Jordà , Ã’scar
  • Schularick, Moritz

Abstract

Business cycles are costlier and stabilization policies could be more beneficial than widely thought. This paper introduces a new test to show that all business cycles are asymmetric and resemble “mini-disasters.†By this we mean that growth is pervasively fat-tailed and non-Gaussian. Using long-run historical data, we show empirically that this is true for advanced economies since 1870. Focusing on peacetime eras, we develop a tractable local projection framework to estimate consumption growth paths for normal and financial-crisis recessions. Introducing random coefficient local projections (RCLP) we get an easy and transparent mapping from the estimates to a calibrated simulation model with disasters of variable severity. Simulations show that substantial welfare costs arise not just from the large rare disasters, but also from the smaller but more frequent mini-disasters in every cycle. On average, and in post-WW2 data, even with low risk aversion, households would sacrifice about 15 percent of consumption to avoid such cyclical fluctuations.

Suggested Citation

  • Taylor, Alan M. & Jordà , Ã’scar & Schularick, Moritz, 2020. "Disasters Everywhere: The Costs of Business Cycles Reconsidered," CEPR Discussion Papers 14559, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:14559
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://cepr.org/publications/DP14559
    Download Restriction: CEPR Discussion Papers are free to download for our researchers, subscribers and members. If you fall into one of these categories but have trouble downloading our papers, please contact us at subscribers@cepr.org
    ---><---

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Òscar Jordà & Moritz Schularick & Alan M. Taylor, 2017. "Macrofinancial History and the New Business Cycle Facts," NBER Macroeconomics Annual, University of Chicago Press, vol. 31(1), pages 213-263.
    2. Xavier Gabaix, 2008. "Variable Rare Disasters: A Tractable Theory of Ten Puzzles in Macro-finance," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(2), pages 64-67, May.
    3. Obstfeld, Maurice, 1994. "Evaluating risky consumption paths: The role of intertemporal substitutability," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 38(7), pages 1471-1486, August.
    4. Robert J. Barro & Tao Jin, 2011. "On the Size Distribution of Macroeconomic Disasters," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 79(5), pages 1567-1589, September.
    5. Kim, Chang-Jin & Nelson, Charles R, 1999. "Friedman's Plucking Model of Business Fluctuations: Tests and Estimates of Permanent and Transitory Components," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 31(3), pages 317-334, August.
    6. James D. Hamilton & Oscar Jorda, 2002. "A Model of the Federal Funds Rate Target," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 110(5), pages 1135-1167, October.
    7. Ricardo Reis, 2009. "The Time-Series Properties of Aggregate Consumption: Implications for the Costs of Fluctuations," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 7(4), pages 722-753, June.
    8. Sichel, Daniel E, 1993. "Business Cycle Asymmetry: A Deeper Look," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 31(2), pages 224-236, April.
    9. Tyler Muir, 2017. "Financial Crises and Risk Premia," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 132(2), pages 765-809.
    10. Francois Gourio, 2012. "Disaster Risk and Business Cycles," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(6), pages 2734-2766, October.
    11. Valerie Cerra & Sweta Chaman Saxena, 2008. "Growth Dynamics: The Myth of Economic Recovery," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(1), pages 439-457, March.
    12. Stéphane Dupraz & Emi Nakamura & Jón Steinsson, 2019. "A Plucking Model of Business Cycles," NBER Working Papers 26351, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    13. Henrik Jensen & Ivan Petrella & Søren Hove Ravn & Emiliano Santoro, 2020. "Leverage and Deepening Business-Cycle Skewness," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 12(1), pages 245-281, January.
    14. Moritz Schularick & Alan M. Taylor, 2012. "Credit Booms Gone Bust: Monetary Policy, Leverage Cycles, and Financial Crises, 1870-2008," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(2), pages 1029-1061, April.
    15. Andrew Atkeson & Christopher Phelan, 1994. "Reconsidering the Costs of Business Cycles with Incomplete Markets," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1994, Volume 9, pages 187-218, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    16. Oscar Jorda & Alan Taylor & Sanjay Singh, 2019. "The Long-Run Effects of Monetary Policy," 2019 Meeting Papers 1307, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    17. repec:fth:harver:1418 is not listed on IDEAS
    18. Nicholas Bloom & Fatih Guvenen & Sergio Salgado, 2016. "Skewed Business Cycles," 2016 Meeting Papers 1621, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    19. Bowsher, Clive G., 2007. "Modelling security market events in continuous time: Intensity based, multivariate point process models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 141(2), pages 876-912, December.
    20. Carmen M. Reinhart & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 2014. "Recovery from Financial Crises: Evidence from 100 Episodes," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(5), pages 50-55, May.
    21. Riccardo Colacito & Eric Ghysels & Jinghan Meng & Wasin Siwasarit, 2016. "Skewness in Expected Macro Fundamentals and the Predictability of Equity Returns: Evidence and Theory," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 29(8), pages 2069-2109.
    22. Jessica A. Wachter, 2013. "Can Time-Varying Risk of Rare Disasters Explain Aggregate Stock Market Volatility?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 68(3), pages 987-1035, June.
    23. Christopher Busch & David Domeij & Fatih Guvenen & Rocio Madera, 2018. "Asymmetric Business-Cycle Risk and Social Insurance," NBER Working Papers 24569, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    24. Rietz, Thomas A., 1988. "The equity risk premium a solution," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 117-131, July.
    25. √Íscar Jord√Ä & Moritz Schularick & Alan M. Taylor, 2013. "When Credit Bites Back," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 45(s2), pages 3-28, December.
    26. Emi Nakamura & Jón Steinsson & Robert Barro & José Ursúa, 2013. "Crises and Recoveries in an Empirical Model of Consumption Disasters," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 5(3), pages 35-74, July.
    27. James Morley & Jeremy Piger, 2012. "The Asymmetric Business Cycle," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 94(1), pages 208-221, February.
    28. Robert J. Barro, 2009. "Rare Disasters, Asset Prices, and Welfare Costs," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(1), pages 243-264, March.
    29. Gerhard Bry & Charlotte Boschan, 1971. "Foreword to "Cyclical Analysis of Time Series: Selected Procedures and Computer Programs"," NBER Chapters, in: Cyclical Analysis of Time Series: Selected Procedures and Computer Programs, pages -1, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    30. J. Bradford DeLong & Lawrence H. Summers, 1988. "How Does Macroeconomic Policy Affect Output?," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 19(2), pages 433-494.
    31. Robert F. Engle & Asger Lunde, 2003. "Trades and Quotes: A Bivariate Point Process," The Journal of Financial Econometrics, Society for Financial Econometrics, vol. 1(2), pages 159-188.
    32. Barnichon, Regis & Matthes, Christian, 2018. "Functional Approximation of Impulse Responses," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 99(C), pages 41-55.
    33. Imrohoruglu, Ayse, 1989. "Cost of Business Cycles with Indivisibilities and Liquidity Constraints," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(6), pages 1364-1383, December.
    34. Robert E. Lucas Jr., 2003. "Macroeconomic Priorities," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(1), pages 1-14, March.
    35. Robert J. Barro, 2006. "Rare Disasters and Asset Markets in the Twentieth Century," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 121(3), pages 823-866.
    36. Romain Rancière & Aaron Tornell & Frank Westermann, 2008. "Systemic Crises and Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 123(1), pages 359-406.
    37. Hu, Ling & Phillips, Peter C. B., 2004. "Nonstationary discrete choice," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 120(1), pages 103-138, May.
    38. Travis J. Berge & Òscar Jordà, 2011. "Evaluating the Classification of Economic Activity into Recessions and Expansions," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 3(2), pages 246-277, April.
    39. Òscar Jordà, 2005. "Estimation and Inference of Impulse Responses by Local Projections," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(1), pages 161-182, March.
    40. Robert F. Engle & Jeffrey R. Russell, 1998. "Autoregressive Conditional Duration: A New Model for Irregularly Spaced Transaction Data," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 66(5), pages 1127-1162, September.
    41. Ian W. R. Martin, 2008. "Disasters and the Welfare Cost of Uncertainty," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(2), pages 74-78, May.
    42. Diebold, Francis X & Rudebusch, Glenn D, 1990. "A Nonparametric Investigation of Duration Dependence in the American Business Cycle," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(3), pages 596-616, June.
    43. Davis, Michael C & Hamilton, James D, 2004. "Why Are Prices Sticky? The Dynamics of Wholesale Gasoline Prices," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 36(1), pages 17-37, February.
    44. Robert J. Barro & Jose F. Ursua, 2008. "Macroeconomic Crises since 1870," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 39(1 (Spring), pages 255-350.
    45. Gerhard Bry & Charlotte Boschan, 1971. "Cyclical Analysis of Time Series: Selected Procedures and Computer Programs," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number bry_71-1, May.
    46. Neftci, Salih N, 1984. "Are Economic Time Series Asymmetric over the Business Cycle?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 92(2), pages 307-328, April.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Fève, Patrick & Sanchez, Pablo Garcia & Moura, Alban & Pierrard, Olivier, 2021. "Costly default and skewed business cycles," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 132(C).
    2. James Mitchell & Martin Weale, 2023. "Censored density forecasts: Production and evaluation," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 38(5), pages 714-734, August.
    3. Òscar Jordà & Martin Kornejew & Moritz Schularick & Alan M Taylor, 2022. "Zombies at Large? Corporate Debt Overhang and the Macroeconomy," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 35(10), pages 4561-4586.
    4. Abdoulaye Millogo, 2020. "Hysteresis Effects and Macroeconomics Gains from Unconventional Monetary Policies Stabilization," Cahiers de recherche 20-12, Departement d'économique de l'École de gestion à l'Université de Sherbrooke.
    5. Basco, Sergi & Domènech, Jordi & Rosés, Joan R., 2021. "The redistributive effects of pandemics: Evidence on the Spanish flu," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 141(C).
    6. Kuvshinov, Dmitry & Richter, Björn & Zimmermann, Kaspar, 2022. "The shifts and the shocks: bank risk, leverage, and the macroeconomy," Working Paper Series 2672, European Central Bank.
    7. Cezar, Rafael & Monnet, Eric, 2023. "Capital controls and foreign reserves against external shocks: Combined or alone?," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 137(C).
    8. Iseringhausen, Martin & Petrella, Ivan & Theodoridis, Konstantinos, 2021. "Aggregate Skewness and the Business Cycle," Cardiff Economics Working Papers E2021/30, Cardiff University, Cardiff Business School, Economics Section.
    9. Toan Phan & Felipe Schwartzman, 2023. "Climate Defaults and Financial Adaptation," Working Paper 23-06, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond.
    10. Fève, Patrick & Sanchez, Pablo Garcia & Moura, Alban & Pierrard, Olivier, 2021. "Costly default and skewed business cycles," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 132(C).
    11. Iqbal, Javed & Mahmood, Fatima & Nosheen, Misbah & Wohar, Mark, 2023. "The asymmetric impact of exchange rate misalignment on economic growth of India: An application of Hodrick–Prescott filter technique," Economic Analysis and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 77(C), pages 809-823.
    12. Alogoskoufis, George & Malliaris, A.G. & Stengos, Thanasis, 2023. "The scope and methodology of economic and financial asymmetries," The Journal of Economic Asymmetries, Elsevier, vol. 27(C).
    13. Yao Chen & Nuno Palma & Felix Ward, 2022. "Goldilocks: American precious metals and the Rise of the West," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 22-063/VI, Tinbergen Institute, revised 15 Feb 2023.
    14. Moritz Schularick, 2021. "Corporate indebtedness and macroeconomic stabilisation from a long-term perspective," ECONtribute Policy Brief Series 024, University of Bonn and University of Cologne, Germany.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Iseringhausen, Martin & Petrella, Ivan & Theodoridis, Konstantinos, 2021. "Aggregate Skewness and the Business Cycle," Cardiff Economics Working Papers E2021/30, Cardiff University, Cardiff Business School, Economics Section.
    2. Rafiq, Shuddhasattwa, 2022. "How did house and stock prices respond to different crisis episodes since the 1870s?," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 114(C).
    3. Sönksen, Jantje & Grammig, Joachim, 2021. "Empirical asset pricing with multi-period disaster risk: A simulation-based approach," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 222(1), pages 805-832.
    4. Bai, Hang & Zhang, Lu, 2022. "Searching for the equity premium," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 143(2), pages 897-926.
    5. Rafiq, Shuddhasattwa, 2020. "Projecting post-crisis house and equity prices since the 1870s:not all crises are alike," MPRA Paper 103164, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    6. Aurland-Bredesen, Kine Josefine, 2021. "The welfare costs of uncertainty: Cross-country evidence," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 146(C).
    7. Funke, Manuel & Schularick, Moritz & Trebesch, Christoph, 2016. "Going to extremes: Politics after financial crises, 1870–2014," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 88(C), pages 227-260.
    8. Isoré, Marlène & Szczerbowicz, Urszula, 2017. "Disaster risk and preference shifts in a New Keynesian model," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 79(C), pages 97-125.
    9. Qunzi Zhang, 2021. "One hundred years of rare disaster concerns and commodity prices," Journal of Futures Markets, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 41(12), pages 1891-1915, December.
    10. Horvath, Jaroslav, 2020. "Macroeconomic disasters and the equity premium puzzle: Are emerging countries riskier?," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 112(C).
    11. Fève, Patrick & Sanchez, Pablo Garcia & Moura, Alban & Pierrard, Olivier, 2021. "Costly default and skewed business cycles," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 132(C).
    12. Rangan Gupta & Tahir Suleman & Mark E. Wohar, 2019. "The role of time‐varying rare disaster risks in predicting bond returns and volatility," Review of Financial Economics, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 37(3), pages 327-340, July.
    13. Juan Carlos Parra‐Alvarez & Olaf Posch & Andreas Schrimpf, 2022. "Peso problems in the estimation of the C‐CAPM," Quantitative Economics, Econometric Society, vol. 13(1), pages 259-313, January.
    14. Tyler Muir, 2017. "Financial Crises and Risk Premia," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 132(2), pages 765-809.
    15. Robert Barro & Tao Jin, 2021. "Rare Events and Long-Run Risks," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 39, pages 1-25, January.
    16. Maximilian Grimm & Òscar Jordà & Moritz Schularick & Alan M. Taylor, 2023. "Loose Monetary Policy and Financial Instability," Working Paper Series 2023-06, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
    17. Lewis, Karen K. & Liu, Edith X., 2017. "Disaster risk and asset returns: An international perspective," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 108(S1), pages 42-58.
    18. Jim Dolmas, 2013. "Disastrous disappointments: asset-pricing with disaster risk and disappointment aversion," Working Papers 1309, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.
    19. Sergio Rebelo & Neng Wang & Jinqiang Yang, 2022. "Rare Disasters, Financial Development, and Sovereign Debt," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 77(5), pages 2719-2764, October.
    20. Fève, Patrick & Sanchez, Pablo Garcia & Moura, Alban & Pierrard, Olivier, 2021. "Costly default and skewed business cycles," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 132(C).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Fluctuations; Asymmetry; Local projections; Random coefficients; Macroprudential policy;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • E13 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General Aggregative Models - - - Neoclassical
    • E21 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Consumption; Saving; Wealth
    • E22 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Investment; Capital; Intangible Capital; Capacity
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:14559. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    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 CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: the person in charge (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://www.cepr.org .

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

    IDEAS is a RePEc service. RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.