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Cross-Sectional Heterogeneity and the Persistence of Aggregate Fluctuations

  • Michelacci, C.

It is well known from time series analysis that shocks to aggregate output have very persistent effects. This paper argues that the relation between the expected growth rate of a firm and its size\ provides a microfoundation for such aggregate persistence. The empirical evidence indicates that small firms grow faster than big ones. If this is true, a shock that reallocates units across sizes will be absorbed, yet at very low decreasing rates. Once the shock hits the system, firms are reallocated across sizes. If small firms grows faster than big ones, the shock will then be absorbed. However, fast growing small firms eventually become big and grow as big firms. Thus the number of small firms shrinks over time as well as the rate at which the shock is absorbed. This transmission mechanism reconciles the micro evidence with the observed degree of aggregate persistence. It requires changes in neither the number of firms in the market nor the rate of technological progress. It is merely the result of the cross-sectional heterogeneity that we observe in real economies.

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Paper provided by Centro de Estudios Monetarios Y Financieros- in its series Papers with number 9906.

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Length: 46 pages
Date of creation: 1999
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:fth:cemfdt:9906
Contact details of provider: Postal: Centro de Estudios Monetarios Y Financieros. Casado del Alisal, 5-28014 Madrid, Spain.
Phone: 914290551
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Web page: http://www.cemfi.es/
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  1. Francis X. Diebold & Glenn D. Rudebusch, 1988. "Long memory and persistence in aggregate output," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 7, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  2. Giuseppe Bertola & Ricardo J. Caballero, 1990. "Kinked Adjustment Costs and Aggregate Dynamics," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1990, Volume 5, pages 237-296 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Dale T. Mortensen & Christopher A. Pissarides, 1998. "Technological Progress, Job Creation and Job Destruction," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 1(4), pages 733-753, October.
  4. Jones, Robert & Newman, Geoffrey, 1995. "Adaptive Capital, Information Depreciation and Schumpeterian Growth," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 105(431), pages 897-915, July.
  5. Gil-Alana, L. A. & Robinson, P. M., 1997. "Testing of unit root and other nonstationary hypotheses in macroeconomic time series," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 80(2), pages 241-268, October.
  6. Peter Howitt, 1999. "Steady Endogenous Growth with Population and R & D Inputs Growing," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(4), pages 715-730, August.
  7. Ricardo J. Caballero & Eduardo M.R.A. Engel & John Haltiwanger, 1995. "Aggregate Employment Dynamics: Building From Microeconomic Evidence," NBER Working Papers 5042, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. John Sutton, 1997. "Gibrat's Legacy," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 35(1), pages 40-59, March.
  9. Granger, C. W. J., 1980. "Long memory relationships and the aggregation of dynamic models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 227-238, October.
  10. repec:cep:stiecm:/1997/323 is not listed on IDEAS
  11. Michelacci, Claudio & Zaffaroni, Paolo, 2000. "(Fractional) beta convergence," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(1), pages 129-153, February.
  12. Diebold, Francis X & Senhadji, Abdelhak S, 1996. "The Uncertain Unit Root in Real GNP: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(5), pages 1291-98, December.
  13. Jones, Charles I, 1995. "Time Series Tests of Endogenous Growth Models," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 110(2), pages 495-525, May.
  14. Evans, David S, 1987. "Tests of Alternative Theories of Firm Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(4), pages 657-74, August.
  15. Blundell, Richard & Griffith, Rachel & van Reenen, John, 1999. "Market Share, Market Value and Innovation in a Panel of British Manufacturing Firms," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 66(3), pages 529-54, July.
  16. Velasco, Carlos, 2000. "Non-Gaussian Log-Periodogram Regression," Econometric Theory, Cambridge University Press, vol. 16(01), pages 44-79, February.
  17. Ricardo J. Caballero & Eduardo M. R. A. Engel, 1999. "Explaining Investment Dynamics in U.S. Manufacturing: A Generalized (S,s) Approach," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 67(4), pages 783-826, July.
  18. Jovanovic, B. & Nyarko, Y., 1996. "Learning by Doing and the Choice of Technology," Working Papers 96-25, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  19. Caballero, Ricardo J & Hammour, Mohamad L, 1994. "The Cleansing Effect of Recessions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(5), pages 1350-68, December.
  20. Lewis, Mervyn K. & Mizen, Paul D., 2000. "Monetary Economics," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198290629, March.
  21. Caballero, Ricardo J & Engel, Eduardo M R A, 1991. "Dynamic (S, s) Economies," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(6), pages 1659-86, November.
  22. repec:cup:macdyn:v:2:y:1998:i:3:p:322-44 is not listed on IDEAS
  23. Velasco, Carlos, 1999. "Non-stationary log-periodogram regression," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 91(2), pages 325-371, August.
  24. Dunne, T. & Roberts, M.J. & Samuelson, L., 1988. "The Growth And Failure Of U.S. Manufacturing Plants," Papers 1-87-5, Pennsylvania State - Department of Economics.
  25. Aghion, Philippe & Saint-Paul, Gilles, 1998. "VIRTUES OF BAD TIMES Interaction Between Productivity Growth and Economic Fluctuations," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 2(03), pages 322-344, September.
  26. 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.
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