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Energy price shocks, capacity utilization and business cycle fluctuations

  • Mary G. Finn
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    This study focuses on the analysis of energy price shocks in the generation of business cycle phenomena. These shocks are transmitted through endogenous fluctuations in capital utilization. The production structure of the model gives rise to an empirical measure of ‘true’ technology growth that is exempt from recent criticisms levelled at the standard measure, i.e., Solow residual growth. The model is calibrated and evaluated for the U.S. economy using annual data over the 1960–1988 period. At business cycle frequencies, the model accounts for 74–91 percent of the volatility of U.S. output; closely matches the strong negative correlation between output and energy prices manifested in the U.S. data; and is generally consistent with other facts characterizing U.S. business cycles. Energy price shocks make a significant quantitative contribution to the model’s ability to explain the data.

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    Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis in its series Discussion Paper / Institute for Empirical Macroeconomics with number 50.

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    Date of creation: 1991
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    Handle: RePEc:fip:fedmem:50
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    1. Alan C. Stockman & Linda L. Tesar, 1991. "Tastes and technology in a two-country model of the business cycle: explaining international co-movements," Working Paper 9019, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
    2. Gary Hansen, 2010. "Indivisible Labor and the Business Cycle," Levine's Working Paper Archive 233, David K. Levine.
    3. Greenwood, Jeremy & Hercowitz, Zvi & Huffman, Gregory W, 1988. "Investment, Capacity Utilization, and the Real Business Cycle," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(3), pages 402-17, June.
    4. Hornstein, Andreas, 1993. "Monopolistic competition, increasing returns to scale, and the importance of productivity shocks," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 299-316, June.
    5. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1982. "Time to Build and Aggregate Fluctuations," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(6), pages 1345-70, November.
    6. Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum, 1990. "Current real business cycle theories and aggregate labor market fluctuations," Discussion Paper / Institute for Empirical Macroeconomics 24, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
    7. Greenwood, Jeremy & Huffman, Gregory W., 1991. "Tax analysis in a real-business-cycle model : On measuring Harberger triangles and Okun gaps," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 167-190, April.
    8. Finn, Mary G. & Hoffman, Dennis L. & Schlagenhauf, Don E., 1990. "Intertemporal asset-pricing relationships in barter and monetary economies An empirical analysis," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(3), pages 431-451, June.
    9. King, Robert G. & Plosser, Charles I. & Rebelo, Sergio T., 1988. "Production, growth and business cycles : II. New directions," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(2-3), pages 309-341.
    10. D. W. Jorgenson & Z. Griliches, 1967. "The Explanation of Productivity Change," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 34(3), pages 249-283.
    11. Burnside, Craig & Eichenbaum, Martin & Rebelo, Sergio, 1993. "Labor Hoarding and the Business Cycle," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(2), pages 245-73, April.
    12. Greenwood, Jeremy & Hercowitz, Zvi, 1991. "The Allocation of Capital and Time over the Business Cycle," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(6), pages 1188-214, December.
    13. Hansen, Gary D. & Sargent, Thomas J., 1988. "Straight time and overtime in equilibrium," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(2-3), pages 281-308.
    14. Hamilton, James D, 1983. "Oil and the Macroeconomy since World War II," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 91(2), pages 228-48, April.
    15. Finn, Mary G., 1990. "On savings and investment dynamics in a small open economy," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(1-2), pages 1-21, August.
    16. Lucas, Robert E., 1977. "Understanding business cycles," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 5(1), pages 7-29, January.
    17. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1991. "Hours and Employment Variation in Business Cycle Theory," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 1(1), pages 63-81, January.
    18. Mendoza, Enrique G, 1991. "Real Business Cycles in a Small Open Economy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(4), pages 797-818, September.
    19. repec:cdl:ucsbec:16-90 is not listed on IDEAS
    20. Christiano, Lawrence J., 1988. "Why does inventory investment fluctuate so much?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(2-3), pages 247-280.
    21. Rasche, Robert H. & Tatom, John A., 1981. "Energy price shocks, aggregate supply and monetary policy: The theory and the international evidence," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 14(1), pages 9-93, January.
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