IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/pra/mprapa/35438.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Learning, capital-embodied technology and aggregate fluctuations

Author

Listed:
  • Gortz, Christoph
  • John, Tsoukalas

Abstract

Business cycles in the U.S. and G-7 economies are asymmetric: recoveries and expansions tend to be long and gradual and busts tend to be short and sharp. Moreover, this type of asymmetry appears more pronounced in the last two cyclical episodes in the G-7. A large body of work views the last two cyclical U.S. episodes, namely, the``new economy" boom in the late 1990s, and the 2000s housing boom-bust as episodes where over-optimistic beliefs have played a significant role. These episodes have revived interest in expectations driven business cycles models. However, previous work in this area has not addressed the important asymmetry feature of business cycles. This paper takes a step towards addressing this limitation of expectations driven business cycle models. We propose a generalization of the Greenwood et al. (1988) model with vintage capital and learning about capital embodied productivity and show it can deliver fluctuations that are asymmetric as in the U.S. data. Learning, calibrated to match the procyclical forecast precision from the Survey of Professional Forecasters, is crucial for the model's ability to generate asymmetries. Forecast errors generated by the model are shown to: (a) amplify fluctuations, and (b) trigger recessions that mimic in magnitude, duration and depth the typical post WW II U.S. recession.

Suggested Citation

  • Gortz, Christoph & John, Tsoukalas, 2011. "Learning, capital-embodied technology and aggregate fluctuations," MPRA Paper 35438, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised Nov 2011.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:35438
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/35438/1/MPRA_paper_35438.pdf
    File Function: original version
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Comin, Diego & Mulani, Sunil, 2009. "A theory of growth and volatility at the aggregate and firm level," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(8), pages 1023-1042, November.
    2. Greenwood, Jeremy & Hercowitz, Zvi & Krusell, Per, 2000. "The role of investment-specific technological change in the business cycle," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 44(1), pages 91-115, January.
    3. Diego Comin, 2009. "On the integration of growth and business cycles," Empirica, Springer;Austrian Institute for Economic Research;Austrian Economic Association, vol. 36(2), pages 165-176, May.
    4. Hansen, Gary D., 1985. "Indivisible labor and the business cycle," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(3), pages 309-327, November.
    5. 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.
    6. Alejandro Justiniano & Giorgio Primiceri & Andrea Tambalotti, 2011. "Investment Shocks and the Relative Price of Investment," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 14(1), pages 101-121, January.
    7. Stefano Eusepi & Bruce Preston, 2011. "Expectations, Learning, and Business Cycle Fluctuations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(6), pages 2844-2872, October.
    8. Justiniano, Alejandro & Primiceri, Giorgio E. & Tambalotti, Andrea, 2010. "Investment shocks and business cycles," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(2), pages 132-145, March.
    9. Sichel, Daniel E, 1993. "Business Cycle Asymmetry: A Deeper Look," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 31(2), pages 224-236, April.
    10. Greenwood, Jeremy & Yorukoglu, Mehmet, 1997. "1974," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 46(1), pages 49-95, June.
      • Greenwood, J. & Yorukoglu, M., 1996. "1974," RCER Working Papers 429, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
    11. Marco Cagetti & Lars Peter Hansen & Thomas Sargent & Noah Williams, 2002. "Robustness and Pricing with Uncertain Growth," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 15(2), pages 363-404, March.
    12. Karnizova, Lilia, 2010. "The spirit of capitalism and expectation-driven business cycles," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(6), pages 739-752, September.
    13. Lawrence J. Christiano & Cosmin Ilut & Roberto Motto & Massimo Rostagno, 2010. "Monetary policy and stock market booms," Proceedings - Economic Policy Symposium - Jackson Hole, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, pages 85-145.
    14. 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.
    15. Alejandro Justiniano & Giorgio E. Primiceri, 2008. "The Time-Varying Volatility of Macroeconomic Fluctuations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(3), pages 604-641, June.
    16. Evans, Geroge W & Honkapohja, Seppo & Romer, Paul, 1998. "Growth Cycles," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(3), pages 495-515, June.
    17. Helpman, Elhanan & Trajtenberg, Manuel, 1994. "A Time to Sow and a Time to Reap: Growth Based on General Purpose Technologies," CEPR Discussion Papers 1080, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    18. Ball, Laurence & Mankiw, N Gregory, 1994. "Asymmetric Price Adjustment and Economic Fluctuations," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 104(423), pages 247-261, March.
    19. Susanto Basu & John G. Fernald & Nicholas Oulton & Sylaja Srinivasan, 2003. "The case of the missing productivity growth: or, does information technology explain why productivity accelerated in the United States but not the United Kingdom?," Working Paper Series WP-03-08, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
    20. Plutarchos Sakellaris & Daniel J. Wilson, 2004. "Quantifying Embodied Technological Change," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 7(1), pages 1-26, January.
    21. Kobayashi Keiichiro & Nutahara Kengo, 2010. "Nominal Rigidities, News-Driven Business Cycles, and Monetary Policy," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 10(1), pages 1-26, September.
    22. 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.
    23. Jushan Bai & Serena Ng, 2005. "Tests for Skewness, Kurtosis, and Normality for Time Series Data," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 23, pages 49-60, January.
    24. 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.
    25. 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.
    26. Beaudry, Paul & Portier, Franck, 2007. "When can changes in expectations cause business cycle fluctuations in neo-classical settings?," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 135(1), pages 458-477, July.
    27. James Morley & Jeremy Piger, 2012. "The Asymmetric Business Cycle," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 94(1), pages 208-221, February.
    28. Van Nieuwerburgh, Stijn & Veldkamp, Laura, 2006. "Learning asymmetries in real business cycles," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(4), pages 753-772, May.
    29. Kenneth Kasa, 2000. "Forecasting the Forecasts of Others in the Frequency Domain," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 3(4), pages 726-756, October.
    30. Caplin, Andrew & Leahy, John, 1994. "Business as Usual, Market Crashes, and Wisdom after the Fact," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(3), pages 548-565, June.
    31. Nir Jaimovich & Sergio Rebelo, 2009. "Can News about the Future Drive the Business Cycle?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(4), pages 1097-1118, September.
    32. 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.
    33. Jovanovic, Boyan & Lach, Saul, 1989. "Entry, Exit, and Diffusion with Learning by Doing," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(4), pages 690-699, September.
    34. 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 561-583, August.
    35. Greenwood, Jeremy & Hercowitz, Zvi & Krusell, Per, 1997. "Long-Run Implications of Investment-Specific Technological Change," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(3), pages 342-362, June.
    36. Dean Croushore, 1993. "Introducing: the survey of professional forecasters," Business Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, issue Nov, pages 3-15.
    37. Christiano, Lawrence & Motto, Roberto & Rostagno, Massimo & Ilut, Cosmin, 2008. "Monetary policy and stock market boom-bust cycles," Working Paper Series 955, European Central Bank.
    38. 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 402-417, June.
    39. Gary D. Hansen & Edward C. Prescott, 2005. "Capacity constraints, asymmetries, and the business cycle," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 8(4), pages 850-865, October.
    40. Guido Lorenzoni, 2009. "A Theory of Demand Shocks," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(5), pages 2050-2084, December.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. repec:eee:dyncon:v:78:y:2017:i:c:p:1-25 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Christoph Görtz & John D. Tsoukalas, 2013. "Sector Specific News Shocks in Aggregate and Sectoral Fluctuations," CESifo Working Paper Series 4269, CESifo Group Munich.
    3. repec:pra:mprapa:38985 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Görtz, Christoph & Tsoukalas, John, 2011. "News and financial intermediation in aggregate and sectoral fluctuations," MPRA Paper 40442, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised Jul 2012.
    5. Christoph Görtz & John D. Tsoukalas, 2017. "News and Financial Intermediation in Aggregate Fluctuations," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 99(3), pages 514-530, July.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    News shocks; expectations; growth asymmetry; Bayesian learning; business cycles;

    JEL classification:

    • E2 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness
    • E3 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:35438. 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: (Joachim Winter). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/vfmunde.html .

    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 CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service 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.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.