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 Tuesdays and Thursdays 11:00 AM to 12:15 PM in room 217, Monteith Building.

Office hours for this class are Tuesdays and Thursdays 9:00 AM to 10:30 AM 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
120 JanCourse Introduction
222 JanMacroeconomic measurement I39-63C2: S1-6, S8-9, S12, G1-2
327 JanDealing with business cycle data 65-75, notes 1-11
429 JanBusiness cycle facts I75-83, notes 12-21C3: S1-3
53 FebQuiz 1 (solution), Business cycles facts II, Data problem handed outnotes 12-21
65 FebHousehold decisions I89-103C4: S1-2, G1-2, G6
710 FebHousehold decisions II, Firm decisions I103-120C4: S3, G3-4
812 FebFirm decisions I, A first macroeconomic model: statics I120-126, 131-134C4: S5, G5
917 FebQuiz 2 (solution), A first macroeconomic model: statics II134-149C5: S2-5, S7, S10-12, G3
1019 FebData problem due, Review session
1124 FebMid-term IMaterial: all until page 146
1226 FebBringing some dynamics: consumption and savings165-192C6: S1-2, S4-6, G1, G3
132 MarBringing some dynamics: Ricardian equivalence192-204C6: S8-9, G4
144 MarQuiz 3, Bringing some dynamics: investment and investment 215-235
1516 MarBringing some dynamics: market equilibrium I235-249C7: S1-4, G1
1618 Mar Bringing some dynamics: policy; Growth introduction249-259C7: S7-9, G2
1723 MarQuiz 4, Growth: the Maltusian modelnotes 1-8
1825 MarGrowth: modern stylized factsnotes 8-12
30 MarReserve
191 AprGrowth: Growth accounting, the Solow model265-280
206 AprReview session
218 AprMid-term IIpages 147-280
2213 AprGrowth: Solow revisited, Golden Rules280-297C8: S3-7, G1-2
2315 AprEngogenous growth: a survey297-309C9: S9-10
2420 AprQuiz 5, Money: what it is317-323, 513-520C9: S1, C14: S1-4
2522 AprMoney: what it does I, Teacher evaluation323-339C9: G1, S2-4
2627 Apr Money: what it does II339-347C9: S5-6
2729 Apr Quiz 6, Money: what it does III347-358C9: S7-8
4 May, 10:30-12:30Final exam, Monteith 303All of the above


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 whether 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 and the Fall 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: