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Bayesian estimation of DSGE models

Listed author(s):
  • Pablo A. Guerrón-Quintana
  • James M. Nason

We survey Bayesian methods for estimating dynamic stochastic general equilibrium (DSGE) models in this article. We focus on New Keynesian (NK)DSGE models because of the interest shown in this class of models by economists in academic and policy-making institutions. This interest stems from the ability of this class of DSGE model to transmit real, nominal, and fiscal and monetary policy shocks into endogenous fluctuations at business cycle frequencies. Intuition about these propagation mechanisms is developed by reviewing the structure of a canonical NKDSGE model. Estimation and evaluation of the NKDSGE model rests on being able to detrend its optimality and equilibrium conditions, to construct a linear approximation of the model, to solve for its linear approximate decision rules, and to map from this solution into a state space model to generate Kalman filter projections. The likelihood of the linear approximate NKDSGE model is based on these projections. The projections and likelihood are useful inputs into the Metropolis-Hastings Markov chain Monte Carlo simulator that we employ to produce Bayesian estimates of the NKDSGE model. We discuss an algorithm that implements this simulator. This algorithm involves choosing priors of the NKDSGE model parameters and fixing initial conditions to start the simulator. The output of the simulator is posterior estimates of two NKDSGE models, which are summarized and compared to results in the existing literature. Given the posterior distributions, the NKDSGE models are evaluated with tools that determine which is most favored by the data. We also give a short history of DSGE model estimation as well as pointing to issues that are at the frontier of this research.

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Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia in its series Working Papers with number 12-4.

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Date of creation: 2012
Handle: RePEc:fip:fedpwp:12-4
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