NBER Working Paper Series
Опубликовано на портале: 18-08-2004Susanto Basu, John G. Fernald, Matthew D. Shapiro NBER Working Paper Series. 2001. w8359.
Measured productivity growth increased substantially during the second half of the 1990s. This paper examines whether this increase owes to an increase in the rate of technological change or whether it can be explained by non-technological factors relating to factor utilization, factor accumulation, or returns to scale. It finds that the recent increase in productivity growth does appear to arise from an increase in technological change. Cyclical utilization raised measured productivity growth relative to technology growth in the first part of the expansion, but lowered it subsequently. Factor adjustment leads to a steady-state understatement of technology growth by measured productivity growth. The understatement was greater in the second half of the expansion than the first. Changes in the distribution of inputs across industries with different returns to scale lead to a modest understatement in the growth in technology. Although the increase technological change is most pronounced in durable manufacturing, technological change also increased outside of manufacturing.
Quantifying Quality Growth [статья]
Опубликовано на портале: 15-11-2004Mark Bils, Peter J. Klenow NBER Working Paper Series. 2000. w7695.
We introduce an instrumental variables approach to estimate the importance of unmeasured quality growth for a set of 66 durable consumer goods. Our instrument is based on predicting which of these 66 goods will display rapid quality growth. Using pooled cross- relatively sections of households in the 1980 through 1996 U.S. Consumer Expenditure Surveys, we estimate quality Engel curves' for 66 durable consumer goods based on the extent richer households pay more for a good, conditional on purchasing. We use the slopes of these curves to predict the rate of quality-upgrading. Just as if households are ascending these quality Engel curves over time, we find that the average price paid rises faster for goods with steeper quality slopes. BLS prices likewise increase more quickly for goods with steeper quality slopes, suggesting the BLS does not fully net out the impact of quality-upgrading on prices paid. We estimate that quality growth averages about 3.7% per year for our goods, with about 60% of this, or 2.2% per year, showing up as higher inflation rather than higher real growth.
Real Exchange Rate Fluctuations and the Dynamics of Retail Trade Industries on the U.S.-Canada Border [статья]
Опубликовано на портале: 24-12-2003Jeffrey R. Campbell, Beverly Lapham NBER Working Paper Series. 2001. w8558.
Consumers living near the U.S.-Canada border can shift their expenditures between the two countries, so real exchange rate fluctuations can act as demand shocks to border areas' retail trade industries. Using annual county-level data, we estimate the effects of real exchange rates on the number of establishments and their average payroll in border counties for four retail industries. In three of the four industries we consider, the number of operating establishments responds either contemporaneously or with a lag of one year to real exchange rate movements. For these industries, the response of retailers' average size is less pronounced. The rapid response of net entry is inconsistent with any model of persistent deviations from purchasing power parity that depends on retailers' costs of changing nominal prices.
Опубликовано на портале: 11-08-2004Ofair Razin, Susan M. Collins NBER Working Paper Series. 1997. No. 6174.
Сегодня концепция отклонения реального курса от своего равновесного уровня (real exchange rate misalignment) является стандартной в международной макроэкономической теории и политике. Однако до сих пор нет единого мнения по поводу того, что считать показателем отклонения и как его строить. В данной статье показатель отклонения строится на основе расширенной модели IS-LM и оценивается с помощью широкого массива данных по развитым и развивающимся странам. Затем эта оценка используется в качестве одной из объясняющих переменных в регрессии для темпа экономического роста. В статье получен интересный результат - связь между отклонением реального курса и темпом роста имеет явно нелинейный характер. Только значительное завышение курса по сравнению с равновесием замедляет рост, в то время как ускорение роста наблюдается при относительно небольшом, но не чрезмерном, занижении курса.
Опубликовано на портале: 11-08-2004Willem Hendrik Buiter, Marcus Miller NBER Working Paper Series. 1981. No. 749.
Политика постепенного сжатия денежной массы в открытой экономике с гибким валютным курсом, но инертными издержками труда, может привести резкому и существенному изменению номинального и реального курса. Одно из позитивных последствий такого "перелета" курса - снижение уровня цен и инфляции заработной платы и цен. В статье показывается, что устойчивая инфляция (steady-state inflation) снижается ценой сокращения совокупного выпуска. Кроме того, подобная политика позволяет добиться снижения цен быстрей по сравнению с аналогичными по эффекту мерами фискальной политики.
Опубликовано на портале: 05-02-2003Steven Shavell, Tanguy Ypersele NBER Working Paper Series. 1999. No. 6956.
This paper compares reward system to intellectual property rights (patents and copyrights). Under a reward system, innovators are paid for innovations directly by government (possibly on the basis of sales), and innovations pass immediately into the public domain. Thus, reward systems engender incentives to innovate without creating the monopoly power of intellectual property rights, but a principal difficulty with rewards is the information requires for their determination. We conclude in our model that intellectual property rights do not possess a fundamental social advantage over reward system, and that an optional reward system under which innovators choose between rewards and intellectual property rights is superior to intellectual property rights.
Sargent-Wallace Meets Krugman-Flood-Garber, or: Why Sovereign Debt Swaps Don't Avert Macroeconomic Crises [статья]
Опубликовано на портале: 11-11-2004Joshua Aizenman, Kenneth M. Kletzer, Brian Pinto NBER Working Paper Series. 2002. w9190.
This paper argues that the frequent failure of the debt swaps is not an accident. Instead, it follows from fundamental forces driven by the market's assessment of the scarcity of fiscal revenue relative to the demand for fiscal outlays. It follows from the observation that arbitrage forces systematically impact prices in asset markets. Ignoring these price adjustments would lead to too optimistic an assessment of the gains from swaps or buybacks. A by-product of our paper is to highlight the perils of financial engineering that ignores the intertemporal constraints imposed by fiscal fundamentals. As a country approaches the range of partial default (either on domestic or external debt), swaps may not provide the expected breathing room and could even bring the crisis forward. Our methodology combines three independent themes: exchange rate crises as the manifestation of excessive monetary injections [Krugman-Flood-Garber], the fiscal theory of inflation [Sargent-Wallace (1981)], and sovereign debt. The integrated framework derives devaluation and external debt repudiation as part of a public-finance optimizing problem. We shows that under conditions similar to those which prevailed in Russia and Argentina prior to their meltdown, swaps are not just neutral, but could actually make the situation worse and even trigger a speculative attack. An unsettlingly clear implication of the model is that there may be very few options left once public debt reaches levels regarded as unsustainable in relation to fiscal fundamentals. Dollarization only makes matters worse, and pushes the debt write-down option to the fore.
Searching for Non-linear Effects of Fiscal Policy: Evidence from Industrial and Developing Countries [статья]
Опубликовано на портале: 05-10-2004Francesco Giavazzi, Tullio Jappelli, Marco Pagano NBER Working Paper Series. 2000. No. 7460.
Several recent studies suggest that the response of national saving to fiscal policy may be non-linear. In this paper we use two data sets to search for the circumstances in which such non-linear responses may arise: a sample of OECD countries used in previous studies, and sample of developing countries, using more recent World Bank data. We find that in both samples non-linear effects tend to be associated with large and persistent fiscal impulses. In the OECD sample the non-linearity of the response is stronger for fiscal contractions than for expansions. An increase in net taxes has no effect on national saving during large fiscal contractions, while it has a positive effect in less pronounced contractions. High or rapidly growing public debt does not appear to be a good predictor of non-linear effects. In the World Bank sample of developing countries, non-linearities in the response national saving to fiscal policy are not limited to large fiscal contractions, and also tend to occur in periods in which debt is accumulating rapidly, regardless of its initial level.
Sorting, Education and Inequality [статья]
Опубликовано на портале: 08-12-2003Raquel Fernandez NBER Working Paper Series. 2001. No. 8101.
This paper examines the education literature through the lens of sorting. It argues that how individuals sort across neighborhoods, schools and households (spouses), can have important consequences for the acquisition of human capital and inequality. It discusses the implications of different education finance systems for sorting and analyzes the efficiency and welfare properties of these in static and dynamic frameworks.
Опубликовано на портале: 24-12-2003James Harrigan NBER Working Paper Series. 2001. w8675.
The core subjects of trade theory are the pattern and volume of trade: which goods are traded by which countries, and how much of those goods are traded. The first part of the paper discusses evidence on comparative advantage, with an emphasis on carefully connecting theory models to data analyses. The second part of the chapter first considers the theoretical foundations of the gravity model, and then reviews the small number of papers that have tried to test, rather than simply use, the implications of gravity. Both parts of the paper yield the same conclusion: we are still in the very early stages of empirically understanding specialization and the volume of trade, but the work that has been done can serve as a starting point for further research.
Опубликовано на портале: 25-10-2007Robert P. Flood, Nancy P. Marion NBER Working Paper Series. 1996. No. 5789.
We develop a modified understand better the 1994 Mexican peso crisis as well as aspects of the European currency crises in 1992-93. We introduce the assumption that the speculative attack is sterilized by the domestic monetary authority, we incorporate a stochastic risk premium, and we allow for some price stickiness. The modified model shows that macroeconomic policies inconsistent in the longer run with a fixed exchange rate can push the economy inevitably towards a currency crisis, but it also demonstrates how a government currently following consistent macroeconomic policies can suddenly face a speculative attack triggered by a large shift in speculative opinion. However, the ability of a sudden shift in speculative opinion to trigger an attack is bounded by the position of fundamentals. Thus an attack does not require a later change in policies to make it profitable
Speculative Growth [статья]
Опубликовано на портале: 26-10-2004Ricardo J. Caballero, Mohamad L. Hammour NBER Working Paper Series. 2002. w9381.
We propose a framework for understanding recurrent historical episodes of vigorous economic expansion accompanied by extreme asset valuations, as exhibited by Japan in the 1980's and the U.S. in the 1990's. We interpret this phenomenon as a high-valuation equilibrium with a low effective cost of capital based on optimism about the future availability of funds for investment. The key to the sustainability of such equilibrium is feedback from increased growth to an increase in the supply of funding. We show that such feedback arises naturally when the expansion is concentrated in a new economy' sector and when it is supported by sustained financial surpluses-both of which would constitute an integral part, as cause and consequence, of a speculative growth' equilibrium. The high-valuation equilibrium we analyze may take the form of a stock market bubble. In contrast to classic bubbles on non-productive assets, the bubbles in our model encourage real investments, boost long run savings, and may appear in dynamically efficient economies.
Опубликовано на портале: 23-12-2003Mattias Ganslandt, James R. Markusen NBER Working Paper Series. 2001. . w8346.
Standards and technical regulations which govern the admissibility of imported goods into an economy raise costs of exporters entering new markets, and may have a particularly high impact on firms seeking to export from developing countries. Yet standards may also have a positive side, such as certifying product quality and safety for the consumer. This paper suggests approaches to modeling standards and technical regulations, with a particular concern that these approaches are at least potentially implementable in an applied general-equilibrium model with real data.
Tax Competition and Trade Protection [статья]
Опубликовано на портале: 23-12-2003Eckhard Janeba, John D. Wilson NBER Working Paper Series. 1999. w7402.
This paper reconsiders the question of whether tax competition for mobile capital leads to tax rates on capital that are too low or too high from the combined viewpoint of the competing regions (or countries in an economic union). In contrast to standard models of tax competition, both commodity trade and capital mobility is allowed to occur between the competing regions and the rest of the world. A key result of the analysis is that whether the capital taxes are too low or high depends on the degree of external trade protection. When the country's central government is free to set the tariff, tax competition leads to inefficiently low tax rates. But in the absence of a tariff, tax rates can be too high. In particular, regions may choose to subsidize capital in equilibrium as a means of inducing favorable terms-of-trade effects, but the subsidy (i.e., a negative tax) will then be too low because an increase in a single region's subsidy benefits other regions by reducing their relative quantities of subsidized capital. These results are discussed in the context of the European Union's Single Market, where non-EU firms have responded to the 'Fortress of Europe' by increasing foreign direct investment.
Testing Trade Theory in Ohlin's Time [статья]
Опубликовано на портале: 22-12-2003Antoni Estevadeordal, Alan M. Taylor NBER Working Paper Series. 2002. w8842.
An empirical tradition in international trade seeks to establish whether the predictions of factor abundance theory match present-day data. In the analysis of goods trade and factor endowments, mildly encouraging results were found by Leamer et al. But ever since the appearance of Leontief's paradox, the measured factor content of trade has always been found to be far smaller than its predicted magnitude in the Heckscher-Ohlin-Vanek framework, the so-called 'missing trade' mystery. Autors wonder if this problem was there in the theory from the beginning. This seems like a fairer test of its creators' original enterprise. Autors apply contemporary tests to historical data on goods and factor trade from Ohlin's time. Autor's analysis is set in a very different context than contemporary studies - an era with lower trade barriers, higher transport costs, a more skewed global distribution of the relevant factors (especially land), and comparably large productivity divergence. Autors find some support for the theory, but also encounter common problems. Autor's work thus complements the tests applied to today's data and informs our search for improved models of trade.