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Understanding Non-Inflationary Demand Driven Business Cycles

  • Franck Portier

    (Toulouse School of Economics)

  • Paul Beaudry

    (University of British Columbia)

During the last thirty years, US business cycles have been characterized by coun- tercyclical technology shocks and very low inflation variability. While the first fact runs counter to an RBC view of fluctuation and calls for demand shocks as a source of fluctuations, the second fact is difficult to reconcile with a New Keynesian model in which demand shocks are accommodated. In this paper we show that non-inflationary demand driven business cycles can be easily explained if one moves away from the rep- resentative agent framework on which the New Keynesian model and the RBC model are based. We show how changes in demand induced by changes in perceptions about the future can cause business cycle type fluctuations when agents are not perfectly mobile across sectors. As we use an extremely simple framework, we discuss the gener- ality of the results and develop a modified New Keynesian model with non inflationary demand driven fluctuations. We also document the relevance of our main assumptions regarding labor market segmentation and incomplete insurance using PSID data over the period 1968-2007.

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Paper provided by Society for Economic Dynamics in its series 2013 Meeting Papers with number 434.

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Date of creation: 2013
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Handle: RePEc:red:sed013:434
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  1. Alejandro Justiniano & Giorgio E. Primiceri & Andrea Tambalotti, 2009. "Investment Shocks and Business Cycles," NBER Working Papers 15570, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Susan Dynarski & Jonathan Gruber, 1997. "Can Families Smooth Variable Earnings?," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 28(1), pages 229-303.
  3. Cochrane, John H., 1991. "A critique of the application of unit root tests," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 275-284, April.
  4. Zheng Liu & Daniel F. Waggoner & Tao Zha, 2010. "Sources of Macroeconomic Fluctuations: A Regime-switching DSGE Approach," Emory Economics 1002, Department of Economics, Emory University (Atlanta).
  5. Craig Burnside & Martin Eichenbaum & Jonas Fisher, 2003. "Fiscal Shocks and Their Consequences," NBER Working Papers 9772, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Stefano Eusepi & Bruce Preston, 2009. "Labor supply heterogeneity and macroeconomic comovement," Staff Reports 399, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  7. Beaudry, Paul & Portier, Franck, 2001. "An Exploration into Pigou's Theory of Cycles," CEPR Discussion Papers 2996, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Beaudry, Paul & Collard, Fabrice & Portier, Franck, 2011. "Gold rush fever in business cycles," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(2), pages 84-97, March.
  9. Den Haan, Wouter & Kaltenbrunner, Georg, 2007. "Anticipated Growth and Business Cycles in Matching Models," CEPR Discussion Papers 6063, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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