IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Investment Shocks and the Comovement Problem

  • John Tsoukala
  • Hashmat Khan

Recent work based on sticky price-wage estimated dynamic stochastic general equilibrium (DSGE) models suggests investment shocks are the most important drivers of post-World War II US business cycles. Consumption, however, typically falls after an investment shock. This finding sits oddly with the observed business cycle co- movement where consumption, along with hours-worked and investment, moves with economic activity. We show that this comovement problem is resolved in an estimated DSGE model when (i) the cost of capital utilization is specified in terms of increased depreciation of capital, as originally proposed by Greenwood et al. (1988) in a neo- classical setting, or (ii) there is no wealth effect on labor supply. The data, however, favours the first channel. Traditionally, the cost of utilization is specified in terms of forgone consumption following Christiano et al. (2005), who studied the effects of monetary policy shocks. The alternative specification we consider has two additional implications relative to the traditional one: (i) it has a substantially better t with the data and (ii) the contribution of investment shocks to the variance of consumption is over three times larger. The contributions to output, investment, and hours, are also relatively higher, suggesting that these shocks may be quantitatively even more important than previous estimates based on the traditional specification.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by University of Nottingham, Centre for Finance, Credit and Macroeconomics (CFCM) in its series Discussion Papers with number 10/09.

in new window

Date of creation:
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:not:notcfc:10/09
Contact details of provider: Postal: School of Economics University of Nottingham University Park Nottingham NG7 2RD
Phone: (44) 0115 951 5620
Fax: (0115) 951 4159
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Zheng Liu, 2009. "Sources of the Great Moderation: Shocks, Frictions, or Monetary Policy?," 2009 Meeting Papers 379, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  2. Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum & Charles Evans, 2001. "Nominal rigidities and the dynamic effects of a shock to monetary policy," Working Paper 0107, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
  3. Smets, Frank & Wouters, Raf, 2007. "Shocks and frictions in US business cycles: a Bayesian DSGE approach," Working Paper Series 0722, European Central Bank.
  4. Sungbae An & Frank Schorfheide, 2007. "Bayesian Analysis of DSGE Models—Rejoinder," Econometric Reviews, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 26(2-4), pages 211-219.
  5. King, Robert G. & Plosser, Charles I. & Rebelo, Sergio T., 1988. "Production, growth and business cycles : I. The basic neoclassical model," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(2-3), pages 195-232.
  6. Stefano Eusepi & Bruce Preston, 2009. "Labor supply heterogeneity and macroeconomic comovement," Staff Reports 399, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  7. John Geweke, 1998. "Using simulation methods for Bayesian econometric models: inference, development, and communication," Staff Report 249, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  8. Jesús Fernández-Villaverde, 2009. "The Econometrics of DSGE Models," NBER Working Papers 14677, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. An, Sungbae & Schorfheide, Frank, 2005. "Bayesian Analysis of DSGE Models," CEPR Discussion Papers 5207, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Alejandro Justiniano & Giorgio E. Primiceri & Andrea Tambalotti, 2009. "Investment Shocks and Business Cycles," NBER Working Papers 15570, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Fransesco Furlanetto & Martin Seneca, 2010. "Investment-specific technology shocks and consumption," Economics wp49, Department of Economics, Central bank of Iceland.
  12. Jaimovich, Nir & Rebelo, Sérgio, 2006. "Can News About the Future Drive the Business Cycle?," CEPR Discussion Papers 5877, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  13. Kimball, Miles S, 1995. "The Quantitative Analytics of the Basic Neomonetarist Model," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 27(4), pages 1241-77, November.
  14. 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.
  15. Andrew Levin & Christopher J. Erceg & Dale W. Henderson, 1999. "Optimal Monetary Policy with Staggered Wage and Price Contracts," Computing in Economics and Finance 1999 1151, Society for Computational Economics.
  16. Jonas D. M. Fisher, 2006. "The Dynamic Effects of Neutral and Investment-Specific Technology Shocks," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 114(3), pages 413-451, June.
  17. Frank Smets & Raf Wouters, 2002. "An estimated dynamic stochastic general equilibrium model of the euro area," Working Paper Research 35, National Bank of Belgium.
  18. Andrew T. Levin & Alexei Onatski & John C. Williams & Noah Williams, 2005. "Monetary Policy Under Uncertainty in Micro-Founded Macroeconometric Models," NBER Working Papers 11523, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Calvo, Guillermo A., 1983. "Staggered prices in a utility-maximizing framework," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 383-398, September.
  20. Robert J. Barro & Robert G. King, 1982. "Time-Separable Preference and Intertemporal-Substitution Models of Business Cycles," NBER Working Papers 0888, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:not:notcfc:10/09. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Hilary Hughes)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.