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News and knowledge capital

  • Christopher M. Gunn
  • Alok Johri

We explore the ability of a model with knowledge capital to generate business cycles driven by expectations of future movement in total factor productivity (TFP). These cycles are characterized by a boom in which consumption, investment, output and hours-worked all rise in advance of any actual movement in TFP. We model knowledge capital as an input into production which is endogenously produced through a learning-by-doing process. When firms receive news of an impending productivity increase, the value of knowledge capital rises, inducing the firm to hire more hours to "invest" in knowledge capital. The rise in the value of knowledge capital immediately raises the value of the firm, causing an appreciation in share prices, a feature that has empirical support. The increase in output of the firm allows both consumption and investment to rise despite the absence of any contemporaneous productivity shock. If the expected increase in productivity fails to materialize, the model generates a recession as well as a crash in the stock market.

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Paper provided by McMaster University in its series Department of Economics Working Papers with number 2009-02.

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Length: 40 pages
Date of creation: Feb 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:mcm:deptwp:2009-02
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  1. Den Haan, Wouter J. & Kaltenbrunner, Georg, 2009. "Anticipated growth and business cycles in matching models," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(3), pages 309-327, April.
  2. Barro, Robert J & King, Robert G, 1984. "Time-separable Preferences and Intertemporal-Substitution Models of Business Cycles," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 99(4), pages 817-39, November.
  3. Robert G. King & Sergio T. Rebelo, 2000. "Resuscitating Real Business Cycles," NBER Working Papers 7534, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Bahk, Byong-Hong & Gort, Michael, 1993. "Decomposing Learning by Doing in New Plants," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(4), pages 561-83, August.
  5. Alok Johri, 2007. "Delivering Endogenous Inertia in Prices and Output," Department of Economics Working Papers 2007-04, McMaster University.
  6. Paul Beaudry & Franck Portier, 2006. "Stock Prices, News, and Economic Fluctuations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(4), pages 1293-1307, September.
  7. Andrew Atkeson & Patrick J. Kehoe, 2005. "Modeling and measuring organization capital," Staff Report 291, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  8. R Cooper & Alok Johri, 2000. "Learning by Doing and Aggregate Fluctuations," Department of Economics Working Papers 2000-02, McMaster University.
  9. Beaudry, Paul & Portier, Franck, 2004. "When Can Changes in Expectations Cause Business Cycle Fluctuations in Neo-Classical Settings?," IDEI Working Papers 304, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
  10. Irwin, Douglas A & Klenow, Peter J, 1994. "Learning-by-Doing Spillovers in the Semiconductor Industry," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(6), pages 1200-1227, December.
  11. Johri, Alok & Lahiri, Amartya, 2008. "Persistent real exchange rates," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(2), pages 223-236, December.
  12. Clarke, Andrew J., 2006. "Learning-by-doing and aggregate fluctuations: Does the form of the accumulation technology matter?," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 92(3), pages 434-439, September.
  13. Chang, Yongsung & Gomes, Joao F & Schorfheide, Frank, 2002. "Learning by Doing as a Propagation Mechanism," CEPR Discussion Papers 3599, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  14. Alok Johri and Marc-André Letendre, 2006. "What do “residuals” from first-order conditions reveal about DGE models?," Department of Economics Working Papers 2006-01, McMaster University.
  15. Ellen R. McGrattan & Edward C. Prescott, 2007. "Unmeasured Investment and the Puzzling U.S. Boom in the 1990s," NBER Working Papers 13499, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. C. Lanier Benkard, 2000. "Learning and Forgetting: The Dynamics of Aircraft Production," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(4), pages 1034-1054, September.
  17. Stephanie Schmitt-Grohe & Martin Uribe, 2008. "What's News in Business Cycles," NBER Working Papers 14215, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Alok Johri, 2009. "Online Appendix to "Delivering endogenous inertia in prices and output"," Technical Appendices 07-131, Review of Economic Dynamics.
  19. Beaudry, Paul & Portier, Franck, 2004. "An exploration into Pigou's theory of cycles," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(6), pages 1183-1216, September.
  20. Paul Beaudry & Bernd Lucke, 2009. "Letting Different Views about Business Cycles Compete," NBER Working Papers 14950, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  21. Christopher Gunn & Alok Johri, 2011. "News and knowledge capital," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 14(1), pages 92-101, January.
  22. King, Robert G & Watson, Mark W, 2002. "System Reduction and Solution Algorithms for Singular Linear Difference Systems under Rational Expectations," Computational Economics, Society for Computational Economics, vol. 20(1-2), pages 57-86, October.
  23. Diego Comin & Mark Gertler & Ana Maria Santacreu, 2009. "Technology Innovation and Diffusion as Sources of Output and Asset Price Fluctuations," Harvard Business School Working Papers 09-134, Harvard Business School.
  24. Rosen, Sherwin, 1972. "Learning by Experience as Joint Production," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 86(3), pages 366-82, August.
  25. Christiano, Lawrence & Ilut, Cosmin & Motto, Roberto & Rostagno, Massimo, 2008. "Monetary policy and stock market boom-bust cycles," Working Paper Series 0955, European Central Bank.
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