Econ 219: Intermediate Macroeconomics

Welcome to this web page! This class is usually taught in several sections, and this page is relevant for the section taught by Christian Zimmermann. This section meets on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays 1-1:50 PM in room 441, Monteith Building.

Office hours for this class are Mondays and Wednesdays 2-3:15 PM or by appointment.


This class will use the following textbook: Macroeconomics, by Steve Williamson. It should be available at the UConn Bookstore (Co-op). Each new book comes with a code that allows you to register on the publisher web site and enjoy some supplementary material, such as the study guide (which I will encourage you to use), Conference Board data and PowerPoint files. We may use Conference Board data (or some other data). I will not use PowerPoint. Those who have a used textbook main not be able to log into the website, as the codes expire after a session (when used).

We will not cover every chapter of the textbook, and I will cover some material not covered in the textbook. Supplementary material along with links to more on certain topics on the web are provided below.


The schedule is still a little bit up in the air. This is a tentative schedule and I will amend it as we progress. The recommended exercices are from the study guide (C=Chapter, S=Short answer question, G=Graphical/numerical question).

DateTopicTextbook PagesRecommended Exercices
125 AugCourse Introduction
227 AugMacroeconomic measurement I39-45C2: S1-6, G1
329 AugMacroeconomic measurement II45-63C2: S8-9, S12, G2
43 SepDealing with business cycle data I65-75, notes 1-11
55 SepDealing with business cycle data II65-75, notes 1-11
68 SepBusiness cycle facts I75-83, notes 12-21C3: S1-3
710 SepBusiness cycle facts II75-83, notes 12-21
812 SepQuiz 1, Business cycles facts III, Data problem handed outnotes 12-21
915 SepHousehold decisions I89-103C4: S1-2, G1-2, G6
1017 SepHousehold decisions II103-112C4: S3, G3-4
1119 SepFirm decisions113-126C4: S5, G5
1222 SepQuiz 2, A first macroeconomic model: statics I131-134
1324 SepData problem due, A first macroeconomic model: statics II134-149C5: S2-5, S7, S10-12, G3
1426 SepReview session
1529 SepMid-term IMaterial: all until page 146
161 OctBringing some dynamics: consumption and savings I165-173C6: S1-2, G1
173 OctBringing some dynamics: consumption and savings II173-192C6: S4-6, G3
186 OctBringing some dynamics: Ricardian equivalence I192-196C6: S8-9, G4
198 OctQuiz III, Bringing some dynamics: Ricardian Equivalence II196-204
2010 OctBringing some dynamics: investment and investment I215-227
2113 OctBringing some dynamics: investment and investment II, market equilibrium I228-243C7: S1-4, G1
2215 OctBringing some dynamics: market equilibrium II243-249
2317 OctQuiz IV, Bringing some dynamics: policy249-259C7: S7-9, G2
2420 OctGrowth: introduction, the Maltusian modelnotes 1-8
2522 OctGrowth: modern stylized factsnotes 8-12
24 OctReserve
2627 OctGrowth: Growth accounting, the Solow model265-280
2729 OctReview session
2831 OctMid-term IIpages 147-280
293 NovGrowth: Solow revisited280-283C8: S3-7
305 NovGrowth: Golden Rules283-297C8: G1-2
317 NovEngogenous growth: a survey297-309C9: S9-10
3210 NovMoney: what it is I317-319, 513-517C9: S1, C14: S1-4
3312 NovQuiz V, Money: what it is II517-520, 321-323
3414 NovMoney: what it does I323-330C9: G1, S2-3
3517 NovMoney: what it does II330-339C9: S4
3619 Nov Money: what it does III, teaching evaluation339-347C9: S5-6
3721 NovQuiz VI, Money: what it does IV347-363C9: S7-8
381 DecMoney surprises411-417C11: S5-9
393 DecCoordination failures426-438C11: S15-18
405 DecReality watch: Discussion of current economic news (theme TBA)
6 DecFinal exam: 8-10AM, ARJ 115Up to lecture 38, review sheet


There will be two "mid-terms" and a final exam. Each will last a full class. I will also sprinkle a certain number of quizzes here and there, both to entice you to work without delay and to allow me to check we are on the right track. The formula will be:

A word about grades. When I grade, the average is usually around 60%. This allows me to reward better those who do well. Do not be too alarmed when you get a grade that is lower than those you get in other classes. But if it is really low, you should do something about it...

There are past exams available on the Spring 2003 page. More are on the Fall 2002 page, but this class followed somewhat different schedule and/or material. If I encourage you to do particular exercices, keep in mind that I may ask similar questions.

Mailing list

Students registered for this class receive regular emails with various updates about the material covered and about grading. Be sure to give me a valid email address that you regularly use.

Supplementary material and links

Classified by chapter, not necessarily by the order we cover the topics in class.
1. Introduction
2. Measurement: Gross Domestic Product, Prices, Savings, and Wealth.
Data sources
Statistical offices around the world.
The Boskin Report
3. Measurement: Business Cycles.
The Hodrick-Prescott filter, various codes for various softwares.
The article that first used the Hodrick-Prescott filter. Published two decades after its writing...
US business cycle dates, as determined by the NBER.
An article on stylized facts for US business cycles.
A working paper with stylized facts for many countries.
An article on the robustness of business cycles facts through time, in particular the comovement between output and prices.
4. Consumer and Firm Behavior: The Work-Leisure Decision and Profit Maximization.
5. A Closed-Economy One-Period Macroeconomic Model.
6. A Two-Period Model: The Consumption-Savings Decision and Ricardian Equivalence.
7. Investment and the Determination of Aggregate Output, the Real Interest Rate, and Employment.
8. Economic Growth.
Economic Growth Resources
Malthus' Essay on the Principle of Population.
The Penn World Tables.
An interactive tutorial for the Solow growth model (bad link, try this)
Robert Solow
Simon Kuznets
Paul Romer
9. A Model of a Monetary Economy: Money Neutrality, Long-Run Inflation, and Money Demand.
Canadian Tire Money
Milton Friedman
10. Keynesian Business Cycle Theory: The Sticky Wage Model.
11. Market-Clearing Models of the Business Cycle.
The QM&RBC home page, with lots of material on RBC theory.
The article that started RBC theory.
A critisism of RBC theory by Gregory Mankiw.
A response by Charles Plosser
A criticism of the representative agent construct.
A response by Charles Plosser.
Finn Kydland
Edward Prescott
12. Trade in Goods and Assets.
13. Money in the Open Economy.
14. Money, Banking, and Central Banking.
Central banks around the world.
15. Unemployment: Search and Efficiency Wages.
16. Inflation, the Phillips Curve, and Central Bank Commitment.
To contact me: Phone: 6-3272, Email: