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Stochastic trends and economic fluctuations

  • Robert G. King
  • Charles I. Plosser
  • James H. Stock
  • Mark W. Watson

Are business cycles mainly the result of permanent shocks to productivity? This paper uses a long-run restriction implied by a large class of real-business-cycle models--identifying permanent productivity shocks as shocks to the common stochastic trend in output, consumption, and investment--to provide new evidence on this question. Econometric tests indicate that this common-stochastic-trend/cointegration implication is consistent with postwar U.S. data. However, in systems with nominal variables, the estimates of this common stochastic trend indicate that permanent productivity shocks typically explain less than half of the business-cycle variability in output, consumption, and investment. Copyright 1991 by American Economic Association.

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Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago in its series Working Paper Series, Macroeconomic Issues with number 91-4.

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Date of creation: 1991
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedhma:91-4
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  1. Watson, Mark W., 1986. "Univariate detrending methods with stochastic trends," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 49-75, July.
  2. Perron, P., 1986. "Tests of Joint Hypotheses for Time Series Regression with a Unit Root," Cahiers de recherche 8632, Universite de Montreal, Departement de sciences economiques.
  3. David E. Runkle, 1987. "Vector autoregressions and reality," Staff Report 107, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  4. Beveridge, Stephen & Nelson, Charles R., 1981. "A new approach to decomposition of economic time series into permanent and transitory components with particular attention to measurement of the `business cycle'," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 7(2), pages 151-174.
  5. Olivier J. Blanchard & Mark W. Watson, 1984. "Are Business Cycles All Alike?," NBER Working Papers 1392, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Watson, Mark W. & Engle, Robert F., 1983. "Alternative algorithms for the estimation of dynamic factor, mimic and varying coefficient regression models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 385-400, December.
  7. Harvey, A C, 1985. "Trends and Cycles in Macroeconomic Time Series," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 3(3), pages 216-27, June.
  8. James H. Stock & Mark W. Watson, 1987. "Interpreting Evidence on Money-Income Causality," NBER Working Papers 2228, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1982. "Time to Build and Aggregate Fluctuations," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(6), pages 1345-70, November.
  10. Runkle, David E, 1987. "Vector Autoregressions and Reality," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 5(4), pages 437-42, October.
  11. King, Robert G & Plosser, Charles I, 1984. "Money, Credit, and Prices in a Real Business Cycle," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(3), pages 363-80, June.
  12. Martin S. Eichenbaum & Kenneth J. Singleton, 1986. "Do Equilibrium Real Business Cycle Theories Explain Post-War U.S. Business Cycles?," NBER Working Papers 1932, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Nelson, Charles R. & Plosser, Charles I., 1982. "Trends and random walks in macroeconmic time series : Some evidence and implications," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 10(2), pages 139-162.
  14. Barro, Robert J., 1976. "Rational expectations and the role of monetary policy," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 2(1), pages 1-32, January.
  15. Phelps, Edmund S & Taylor, John B, 1977. "Stabilizing Powers of Monetary Policy under Rational Expectations," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(1), pages 163-90, February.
  16. Fischer, Stanley, 1977. "Long-Term Contracts, Rational Expectations, and the Optimal Money Supply Rule," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(1), pages 191-205, February.
  17. Brock, William A. & Mirman, Leonard J., 1972. "Optimal economic growth and uncertainty: The discounted case," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 4(3), pages 479-513, June.
  18. Runkle, David E, 1987. "Vector Autoregressions and Reality: Reply," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 5(4), pages 454, October.
  19. Sims, Christopher A, 1980. "Macroeconomics and Reality," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(1), pages 1-48, January.
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