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Model uncertainty, state uncertainty, and state-space models


  • Yulei Luo
  • Jun Nie
  • Eric R. Young


This technical paper considers ways to capture uncertainty in the context of so-called "state-space" models. ; State-space models are powerful tools commonly used in macroeconomics, international economics, and finance. State-space models can generate estimates of an underlying, ultimately unobserved variable—such as the natural rate of unemployment—based on the movements of other variables that are observed and have some relationship to the unobserved variable. The paper shows how several macroeconomic models can be mapped to the state-space framework, thus helping quantify uncertainty about the true model (model uncertainty) or about the amount of information available when decisions are made (state uncertainty).

Suggested Citation

  • Yulei Luo & Jun Nie & Eric R. Young, 2012. "Model uncertainty, state uncertainty, and state-space models," Research Working Paper RWP 12-02, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedkrw:rwp12-02

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Reis, Ricardo, 2006. "Inattentive consumers," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(8), pages 1761-1800, November.
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    3. Maurice Obstfeld & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 1996. "Foundations of International Macroeconomics," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262150476, January.
    4. Luo, Yulei & Nie, Jun & Young, Eric R., 2014. "Model uncertainty and intertemporal tax smoothing," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 289-314.
    5. Luo, Yulei & Nie, Jun & Young, Eric R., 2014. "Robust control, informational frictions, and international consumption correlations," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 67(C), pages 1-27.
    6. Barro, Robert J, 1979. "On the Determination of the Public Debt," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(5), pages 940-971, October.
    7. Lars Peter Hansen & Thomas J. Sargent & Thomas D. Tallarini, 1999. "Robust Permanent Income and Pricing," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 66(4), pages 873-907.
    8. Huang, Chao-Hsi & Lin, Kenneth S., 1993. "Deficits, government expenditures, and tax smoothing in the United States: 1929-1988," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 317-339, June.
    9. Yulei Luo, 2008. "Consumption Dynamics under Information Processing Constraints," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 11(2), pages 366-385, April.
    10. Hansen, Lars Peter & Sargent, Thomas J. & Wang, Neng E., 2002. "Robust Permanent Income And Pricing With Filtering," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 6(01), pages 40-84, February.
    11. Yulei Luo & Eric R. Young, 2010. "Risk-Sensitive Consumption and Savings under Rational Inattention," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 2(4), pages 281-325, October.
    12. Luo, Yulei & Nie, Jun & Young, Eric R., 2012. "Robustness, information–processing constraints, and the current account in small open economies," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(1), pages 104-120.
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