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Inventory Investment and the Business Cycle : The usual Suspect

  • Frédérique Bec

    ()

    (CREST, THEMA)

  • Mélika Ben Salem

    (CEE, PSE, Université Paris Est)

From quarterly postwar US and French data, this paper provides evidence of a bounce-back effect in inventory investment but not in final sales data. Actually, from a bounce-back augmented threshold model, it appears that i) the null hypothesis of no bounce-back effect is strongly rejected by the inventory investment data and ii) the one-step ahead forecasting performances of the models accounting for this bounce-back effect are well improved compared to linear or standard threshold autoregressions. This supports the conventional wisdom that inventory investment exacerbates aggregate fluctuations, in line with the recent theoretical models by, e.g., Wang and Wen (Wang, P., and Y. Wen. 2009. “Inventory Accelerator in General Equilibrium.” Working Paper 010, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis) and Wang, Wen and Xu (Wang, P., Y. Wen, and Z. Xu. 2011. “When do Inventories Destabilize the Economy? An Analytical Approach to (s,s) Policies.” Working Paper 014, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis) which clearly predict a destabilizing role of inventory investment over the business cycle. By contrast, our empirical findings cast doubt on models based on the stockouts avoidance motive for holding inventories.

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Paper provided by Centre de Recherche en Economie et Statistique in its series Working Papers with number 2012-09.

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Length: 20
Date of creation: Apr 2012
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Handle: RePEc:crs:wpaper:2012-09
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  1. Jeremy Piger & James Morley & Chang-Jin Kim, 2005. "Nonlinearity and the permanent effects of recessions," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 20(2), pages 291-309.
  2. Kahn, James A, 1987. "Inventories and the Volatility of Production," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(4), pages 667-79, September.
  3. Oleksiy Kryvtsov & Virgiliu Midrigan, 2009. "Inventories, Markups, and Real Rigidities in Menu Cost Models," NBER Working Papers 14651, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Mark Bils & James A. Kahn, 1999. "What inventory behavior tells us about business cycles," Staff Reports 92, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  5. Russell Cooper & John Haltiwanger, 1990. "Macroeconomic Implications of Production Bunching: Factor Demand Linkages," Papers 0001, Boston University - Industry Studies Programme.
  6. Inoue, Atsushi & Kilian, Lutz, 2003. "On the selection of forecasting models," Working Paper Series 0214, European Central Bank.
  7. Robert B. Davies, 2002. "Hypothesis testing when a nuisance parameter is present only under the alternative: Linear model case," Biometrika, Biometrika Trust, vol. 89(2), pages 484-489, June.
  8. Diebold, Francis X & Mariano, Roberto S, 1995. "Comparing Predictive Accuracy," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 13(3), pages 253-63, July.
  9. Frédérique BEC & Othman BOUABDALLAH & Laurent FERRARA, 2011. "The Possible Shapes of Recoveries in Markov-Switching Models," Working Papers 2011-02, Centre de Recherche en Economie et Statistique.
  10. James Morley & Jeremy Piger, 2012. "The Asymmetric Business Cycle," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 94(1), pages 208-221, February.
  11. Costantini, Mauro & Kunst, Robert M., 2011. "On the Usefulness of the Diebold-Mariano Test in the Selection of Prediction Models," Economics Series 276, Institute for Advanced Studies.
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