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Valuation, investment and the pure profit share

Listed author(s):
  • Pierre Lafourcade
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    This paper explores some implications for valuation and investment of challenging the standard assumption that there are no aggregate pure profits in the US economy. First, it highlights the theoretical importance of monopoly rents for fluctuations in average Q. A series for such rents is then computed by assuming that production is Cobb-Douglas, as fluctuations in the output share of pure profits may be inferred from variations in the labor share. Consequently, the paper focuses on the correlation between a measure of rents and observable average Q. It also reassesses the empirical disconnection between investment and a measure of marginal q purged of monopoly rents. The paper finds that the existence of pure profits as constructed from unit labor costs only accounts for about 5% of fluctuations in observed Q, and alters only minimally the empirical relationship between q and investment.

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    Paper provided by Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.) in its series Finance and Economics Discussion Series with number 2004-08.

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    Date of creation: 2004
    Handle: RePEc:fip:fedgfe:2004-08
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    1. Robert E. Hall, 2001. "The Stock Market and Capital Accumulation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(5), pages 1185-1202, December.
    2. John H. Cochrane, 1997. "Where is the market going? Uncertain facts and novel theories," Economic Perspectives, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, issue Nov, pages 3-37.
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    5. Steven M. Fazzari & R. Glenn Hubbard & BRUCE C. PETERSEN, 1988. "Financing Constraints and Corporate Investment," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 19(1), pages 141-206.
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    7. Olivier Blanchard & Changyong Rhee & Lawrence Summers, 1993. "The Stock Market, Profit, and Investment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 108(1), pages 115-136.
    8. Abel, Andrew B & Blanchard, Olivier J, 1986. "The Present Value of Profits and Cyclical Movements in Investment," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 54(2), pages 249-273, March.
    9. Hayashi, Fumio, 1982. "Tobin's Marginal q and Average q: A Neoclassical Interpretation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(1), pages 213-224, January.
    10. Caballero, Ricardo J., 1999. "Aggregate investment," Handbook of Macroeconomics,in: J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Macroeconomics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 12, pages 813-862 Elsevier.
    11. Julio J. Rotemberg & Michael Woodford, 1993. "Dynamic General Equilibrium Models with Imperfectly Competitive Product Markets," NBER Working Papers 4502, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    12. Narayana R. Kocherlakota, 1996. "The Equity Premium: It's Still a Puzzle," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 34(1), pages 42-71, March.
    13. Robertson, Donald & Wright, Stephen, 1998. "The Good News and the Bad News about Long-run Stock Market Returns," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 9822, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
    14. Abel, Andrew B., 1999. "Risk premia and term premia in general equilibrium," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 3-33, February.
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