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Some Issues in Using Sign Restrictions for Identifying Structural VARs

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Abstract

The paper looks at estimation of structural VARs with sign restrictions. Since sign restrictions do not generate a unique model it is necessary to find some way of summarizing the information they yield. Existing methods present impulse responses from different models and it is argued that they should come from a common model. If this is not done the implied shocks implicit in the impulse responses will not be orthogonal. A method is described that tries to resolve this difficulty. It works with a common model whose impulse responses are as close as possible to the median values of the impulse responses (taken over the range of models satisfying the sign restrictions). Using a simple demand and supply model it is shown that there is no reason to think that sign restrictions will generate better quantitative estimates of the effects of shocks than existing methods such as assuming a system is recursive.

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  • Renee Fry & Adrian Pagan, 2007. "Some Issues in Using Sign Restrictions for Identifying Structural VARs," NCER Working Paper Series 14, National Centre for Econometric Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:qut:auncer:2007-8
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    File URL: http://www.ncer.edu.au/papers/documents/WpNo14Apr07.pdf
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    4. Jon Faust, 1998. "The robustness of identified VAR conclusions about money," International Finance Discussion Papers 610, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    5. Canova, Fabio & Nicolo, Gianni De, 2002. "Monetary disturbances matter for business fluctuations in the G-7," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(6), pages 1131-1159, September.
    6. Faust, Jon, 1998. "The robustness of identified VAR conclusions about money," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 49(1), pages 207-244, December.
    7. Roland Straub & Gert Peersman, 2006. "Putting the New Keynesian Model to a Test," IMF Working Papers 06/135, International Monetary Fund.
    8. Scholl, Almuth & Uhlig, Harald, 2008. "New evidence on the puzzles: Results from agnostic identification on monetary policy and exchange rates," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(1), pages 1-13, September.
    9. Juan Francisco Rubio-Ramírez & Daniel F. Waggoner & Tao Zha, 2005. "Markov-switching structural vector autoregressions: theory and application," FRB Atlanta Working Paper 2005-27, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
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