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INVESTMENT IRREVERSIBILITY IN GENERAL EQUILIBRIUM: Capital Accumulation, Interest Rates, and the Risk Premium

  • Miquel Faig

This paper provides a tractable general equilibrium model that can accommodate shocks and irreversibility constraints both at the firm and at the aggregate level. Under realistic conditions, irreversibility not only prevents capital destruction, but it also promotes capital creation. Moreover, irreversibility depresses risk-free rates, especially in booms, and magnifies risk premia, especially in downturns. In addition to the theoretical analysis, two numerical examples illustrate the quantitative effects of investment irreversibility in the face of either large rare depressions or mild frequent recessions.

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File URL: http://www.economics.utoronto.ca/public/workingPapers/UT-ECIPA-FAIG-97-01.ps
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Paper provided by University of Toronto, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number faig-97-01.

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Length: 37 pages
Date of creation: 14 May 1997
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:tor:tecipa:faig-97-01
Contact details of provider: Postal: 150 St. George Street, Toronto, Ontario
Phone: (416) 978-5283

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  9. Avinash K. Dixit & Robert S. Pindyck, 1994. "Investment under Uncertainty," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 5474, March.
  10. Boldrin, M. & Christiano, L.J. & Fisher, J.D.M., 1995. "Asset Pricing Lessons for Modeling Business Cycles," UWO Department of Economics Working Papers 9513, University of Western Ontario, Department of Economics.
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  12. R. Glenn Hubbard, 1994. "Investment under Uncertainty: Keeping One's Options Open," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 32(4), pages 1816-1831, December.
  13. Abel, Andrew B & Eberly, Janice C, 1996. "Optimal Investment with Costly Reversibility," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 63(4), pages 581-93, October.
  14. Ferson, Wayne E & Harvey, Campbell R, 1991. "The Variation of Economic Risk Premiums," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(2), pages 385-415, April.
  15. Andrew B. Abel & Janice C. Eberly, 1995. "The Effects of Irreversibility and Uncertainty on Capital Accumulation," NBER Working Papers 5363, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Marcelo Veracierto, 1997. "Plant level irreversible investment and equilibrium business cycles," Discussion Paper / Institute for Empirical Macroeconomics 115, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  17. Thomas J. Sargent, 1979. ""Tobin's Q" and the rate of investment in general equilibrium," Staff Report 40, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  18. Lawrence J. Christiano & Jonas D.M. Fisher, 1995. "Tobin's Q and asset returns: implications for business cycle analysis," Staff Report 200, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  19. Pindyck, Robert S., 1986. "Irreversible investment, capacity choice, and the value of the firm," Working papers 1802-86., Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
  20. Coleman Ii, Wilbur John, 1997. "Behavior Of Interest Rates In A General Equilibrium Multisector Model With Irreversible Investment," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 1(01), pages 206-227, January.
  21. Dow, James Jr. & Olson, Lars J., 1992. "Irreversibility and the behavior of aggregate stochastic growth models," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 16(2), pages 207-223, April.
  22. Pindyck, Robert, 1989. "Irreversibility, uncertainty, and investment," Policy Research Working Paper Series 294, The World Bank.
  23. Leahy, John V, 1993. "Investment in Competitive Equilibrium: The Optimality of Myopic Behavior," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 108(4), pages 1105-33, November.
  24. Stephen G. Cecchetti & Pok-sang Lam & Nelson C. Mark, 1988. "Mean Reversion in Equilibrium Asset Prices," NBER Working Papers 2762, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  25. Epstein, Larry G & Zin, Stanley E, 1991. "Substitution, Risk Aversion, and the Temporal Behavior of Consumption and Asset Returns: An Empirical Analysis," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(2), pages 263-86, April.
  26. Fama, Eugene F & French, Kenneth R, 1988. "Permanent and Temporary Components of Stock Prices," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 96(2), pages 246-73, April.
  27. Epstein, Larry G & Zin, Stanley E, 1989. "Substitution, Risk Aversion, and the Temporal Behavior of Consumption and Asset Returns: A Theoretical Framework," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(4), pages 937-69, July.
  28. Beaudry, Paul & Guay, Alain, 1996. "What do interest rates reveal about the functioning of real business cycle models?," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 20(9-10), pages 1661-1682.
  29. Narayana R. Kocherlakota, 1995. "The equity premium: it's still a puzzle," Discussion Paper / Institute for Empirical Macroeconomics 102, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  30. Caplin, Andrew & Leahy, John V, 1993. "Sectoral Shocks, Learning, and Aggregate Fluctuations," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 60(4), pages 777-94, October.
  31. Olson, Lars J., 1989. "Stochastic growth with irreversible investment," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 47(1), pages 101-129, February.
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