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A Model of Secular Stagnation: Theory and Quantitative Evaluation

Listed author(s):
  • Gauti B. Eggertsson
  • Neil R. Mehrotra
  • Jacob A. Robbins

This paper formalizes and quantifies the secular stagnation hypothesis, defined as a persistently low or negative natural rate of interest leading to a chronically binding zero lower bound (ZLB). Output-inflation dynamics and policy prescriptions are fundamentally different from those in the standard New Keynesian framework. Using a 56-period quantitative life cycle model, a standard calibration to US data delivers a natural rate ranging from –1:5% to –2%, implying an elevated risk of ZLB episodes for the foreseeable future. We decompose the contribution of demographic and technological factors to the decline in interest rates since 1970 and quantify changes required to restore higher rates.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 23093.

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Date of creation: Jan 2017
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:23093
Note: ME
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  1. Robert J. Gordon, 2016. "The Rise and Fall of American Growth: The U.S. Standard of Living since the Civil War," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, number 10544.
  2. Andrew B. Abel & N. Gregory Mankiw & Lawrence H. Summers & Richard J. Zeckhauser, 1989. "Assessing Dynamic Efficiency: Theory and Evidence," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 56(1), pages 1-19.
  3. Paul A. Samuelson, 1958. "An Exact Consumption-Loan Model of Interest with or without the Social Contrivance of Money," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 66, pages 467-467.
  4. Raphael Schoenle & Gauti Eggertsson & Saroj Bhattarai, 2012. "Is Increased Price Flexibility Stabilizing? Redux," 2012 Meeting Papers 487, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  5. Joshua K. Hausman & Johannes F. Wieland, 2014. "Abenomics: Preliminary Analysis and Outlook," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 45(1 (Spring), pages 1-76.
  6. Gregory Thwaites, 2014. "Why are real interest rates so low? Secular stagnation and the relative price of investment goods," Discussion Papers 1428, Centre for Macroeconomics (CFM).
  7. N. Gregory Mankiw & David Romer & David N. Weil, 1992. "A Contribution to the Empirics of Economic Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 107(2), pages 407-437.
  8. Vladimir Asriyan & Luca Fornaro & Alberto Martin & Jaume Ventura, 2016. "Monetary Policy for a Bubbly World," NBER Working Papers 22639, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum & Charles L. Evans, 2005. "Nominal Rigidities and the Dynamic Effects of a Shock to Monetary Policy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(1), pages 1-45, February.
  10. Decker, Ryan A. & Haltiwanger, John & Jarmin, Ron S. & Miranda, Javier, 2016. "Where has all the skewness gone? The decline in high-growth (young) firms in the U.S," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 86(C), pages 4-23.
  11. Gauti B. Eggertsson & Sanjay R. Singh, 2016. "Log-linear Approximation versus an Exact Solution at the ZLB in the New Keynesian Model," NBER Working Papers 22784, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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