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Confidence Crashes and Animal Spirits

  • Roger E. A. Farmer


This paper presents a model of the macroeconomy that reformulates what I take to be two important ideas from Keynes General Theory. The first is that there may be a continuum of steady state unemployment rates. The second is that beliefs select an equilibrium. I argue that search and matching costs in the labor market lead to the existence of a continuum of equilibria and I resolve the resulting indeterminacy by assuming that the beliefs of stock market participants are self-fulfilling. The paper reconciles Keynesian economics with general equilibrium theory without invoking the assumption of frictions that prevent wages and prices from reaching their equilibrium levels.

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Paper provided by Society for Economic Dynamics in its series 2011 Meeting Papers with number 603.

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Date of creation: 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:red:sed011:603
Contact details of provider: Postal: Society for Economic Dynamics Marina Azzimonti Department of Economics Stonybrook University 10 Nicolls Road Stonybrook NY 11790 USA
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  1. Bruce Greenwald & Joseph E. Stiglitz, 1988. "Pareto Inefficiency of Market Economies: Search and Efficiency Wage Models," NBER Working Papers 2651, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Roger E.A. Farmer & Dmitry Plotnikov, 2010. "Does Fiscal Policy Matter? Blinder and Solow Revisited," NBER Working Papers 16644, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Mankiw, N Gregory & Rotemberg, Julio J & Summers, Lawrence H, 1985. "Intertemporal Substitution in Macroeconomics," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 100(1), pages 225-51, February.
  4. Roger E.A. Farmer, 2010. "Animal Spirits, Persistent Unemployment and the Belief Function," NBER Working Papers 16522, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Howitt, Peter & McAfee, R Preston, 1987. "Costly Search and Recruiting," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 28(1), pages 89-107, February.
  6. Marcus Hagedorn & Iourii Manovskii, 2007. "The Cyclical Behavior of Equilibrium Unemployment and Vacancies Revisited," IEW - Working Papers 351, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
  7. Diamond, Peter A, 1982. "Aggregate Demand Management in Search Equilibrium," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 90(5), pages 881-94, October.
  8. Robert Shimer, 2005. "The Cyclical Behavior of Equilibrium Unemployment and Vacancies," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(1), pages 25-49, March.
  9. Farmer, Roger, 2010. "Expectations, Employment and Prices," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780195397901, July.
  10. Luca Sala & Antonella Trigari & Mark Gertler, 2007. "An Estimated Monetary DSGE Model with Unemployment and Staggered Nominal Wage Bargaining," 2007 Meeting Papers 353, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  11. Roger E. A. Farmer, 2008. "Aggregate demand and supply," International Journal of Economic Theory, The International Society for Economic Theory, vol. 4(1), pages 77-93.
  12. Marco Guerrazzi, 2010. "Stochastic Dynamics and Matching in the Old Keynesian Economics: A Rationale for the Shimer's Puzzle," Discussion Papers 2010/95, Dipartimento di Economia e Management (DEM), University of Pisa, Pisa, Italy.
  13. Farmer, Roger E.A., 2010. "How to reduce unemployment: A new policy proposal," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(5), pages 557-572, July.
  14. Hosios, Arthur J, 1990. "On the Efficiency of Matching and Related Models of Search and Unemployment," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 57(2), pages 279-98, April.
  15. Farmer, Roger E A, 2005. "Shooting the Auctioneer," CEPR Discussion Papers 4825, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  16. Paolo Gelain & Marco Guerrazzi, 2010. "A DSGE Model from the Old Keynesian Economics: An Empirical Investigation," CDMA Working Paper Series 201014, Centre for Dynamic Macroeconomic Analysis.
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