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Real Estate Prices, Borrowing Constraints and Business Cycles -A Study of the Japanese Economy

  • Suparna Chakraborty

    (University of Minnesota & Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis)

This paper investigates the causes of business cycle fluctuations that Japan experienced over the period 1980 to 2000. To this end, I build a dynamic general equilibrium model with endogenous borrowing constraints where business cycle fluctuations are the result of TFP fluctuations and investment frictions. I identify land tax changes since 1984 as a possible source of investment frictions, the idea being that given a strong preference for debt-financing and widespread use of land as collateral in Japan, land tax changes will cause fluctuations in land price that can potentially affect output and investment by affecting borrowing capacity of firms. Calibrating the model using Japanese data and feeding in observed TFP and land taxes one by one and in unison, I find that TFP and land tax fluctuations can significantly account for observed fluctuations in output, but cannot account for land price fluctuations unless agents expect land tax changes to be permanent. I further identify redistribution of land holding between commercial and residential uses in response to land tax and TFP changes as an important channel through which the effect of these external fluctuations on output gets amplified. Observed data of land use in Japan provides evidence of such redistribution.

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File URL: http://econwpa.repec.org/eps/mac/papers/0504/0504012.pdf
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Paper provided by EconWPA in its series Macroeconomics with number 0504012.

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Length: 60 pages
Date of creation: 06 Apr 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpma:0504012
Note: Type of Document - pdf; pages: 60
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://econwpa.repec.org

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