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Creator: Kehoe, Timothy Jerome, 1953- and Prescott, Edward C. Series: Staff report (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 418 Abstract:
Three of the arguments made by Temin (2008) in his review of Great Depressions of the Twentieth Century are demonstrably wrong: that the treatment of the data in the volume is cursory; that the definition of great depressions is too general and, in particular, groups slow growth experiences in Latin America in the 1980s with far more severe great depressions in Europe in the 1930s; and that the book is an advertisement for the real business cycle methodology. Without these three arguments — which are the results of obvious conceptual and arithmetical errors, including copying the wrong column of data from a source — his review says little more than that he does not think it appropriate to apply our dynamic general equilibrium methodology to the study of great depressions, and he does not like the conclusion that we draw: that a successful model of a great depression needs to be able to account for the effects of government policy on productivity.
In 2008, Peter Temin wrote a review of the book that appeared in the Journal of Economic Literature. This staff report and accompanying data file are in response to the review.
Citation for review: Temin, Peter. 2008. "Real Business Cycle Views of the Great Depression and Recent Events: A Review of Timothy J. Kehoe and Edward C. Prescott's Great Depressions of the Twentieth Century." Journal of Economic Literature, 46 (3): 669-84. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1257/jel.46.3.669
Creator: Bergoeing, Raphael and Kehoe, Timothy Jerome, 1953- Series: Staff report (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 284 Abstract:
This paper quantitatively tests the “new trade theory” based on product differentiation, increasing returns, and imperfect competition. We employ a standard model, which allows both changes in the distribution of income among industrialized countries, emphasized by Helpman and Krugman (1985), and nonhomothetic preferences, emphasized by Markusen (1986), to effect trade directions and volumes. In addition, we generalize the model to allow changes in relative prices to have large effects. We test the model by calibrating it to 1990 data and then “backcasting” to 1961 to see what changes in crucial variables between 1961 and 1990 are predicted by the theory. The results show that, although the model is capable of explaining much of the increased concentration of trade among industrialized countries, it is not capable of explaining the enormous increase in the ratio of trade to income. Our analysis suggests that it is policy changes, rather than the elements emphasized in the new trade theory, that have been the most significant determinants of the increase in trade volume.
Mot-clé: Nonhomothetic Preferences, Product Differentiation, Imperfect Competition, Trade Growth, Intraindustry Trade, and Scale Economics Assujettir: F12 - Models of Trade with Imperfect Competition and Scale Economies; Fragmentation, F13 - Trade Policy; International Trade Organizations, and F17 - Trade: Forecasting and Simulation
Creator: Bergoeing, Raphael, Kehoe, Patrick J., Kehoe, Timothy Jerome, 1953-, and Soto, Raimundo Series: Staff report (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 292 Abstract:
Chile and Mexico experienced severe economic crises in the early 1980s. This paper analyzes four possible explanations for why Chile recovered much faster than did Mexico. Comparing data from the two countries allows us to rule out a monetarist explanation, an explanation based on falls in real wages and real exchange rates, and a debt overhang explanation. Using growth accounting, a calibrated growth model, and economic theory, we conclude that the crucial difference between the two countries was the earlier policy reforms in Chile that generated faster productivity growth. The most crucial of these reforms were in banking and bankruptcy procedures.
Mot-clé: Depression, Growth accounting, Chile, Total factor productivity, and Mexico Assujettir: N16 - Economic History: Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics; Industrial Structure; Growth; Fluctuations: Latin America; Caribbean, E32 - Business Fluctuations; Cycles, and O40 - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity: General
Creator: Kehoe, Timothy Jerome, 1953- Series: Staff report (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 318 Abstract:
Currently, Argentina is experiencing what the government describes as a “great depression.” Using the “Great Depressions” methodology developed by Cole and Ohanian (1999) and Kehoe and Prescott (2002), we find that the primary determinants of both the boom in Argentina in the 1990s and the subsequent depression were changes in productivity, rather than changes in factor inputs. The timing of events links the boom to the currency-board-like Convertibility Plan and the crisis to its collapse. To gain credibility, the Argentine government took measures to make abandoning the plan more costly. Because the government was unable to enforce fiscal discipline, however, these increased costs failed to make the plan more credible and instead made the crisis far worse when it failed.
Creator: Kehoe, Timothy Jerome, 1953- and Ruhl, Kim J. Series: Staff report (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 391 Abstract:
International trade is frequently thought of as a production technology in which the inputs are exports and the outputs are imports. Exports are transformed into imports at the rate of the price of exports relative to the price of imports: the reciprocal of the terms of trade. Cast this way, a change in the terms of trade acts as a productivity shock. Or does it? In this paper, we show that this line of reasoning cannot work in standard models. Starting with a simple model and then generalizing, we show that changes in the terms of trade have no first-order effect on productivity when output is measured as chain-weighted real GDP. The terms of trade do affect real income and consumption in a country, and we show how measures of real income change with the terms of trade at business cycle frequencies and during financial crises.
Mot-clé: Terms of trade, Total factor productivity, Gross domestic product, and National income accounting Assujettir: F41 - Open Economy Macroeconomics, E23 - Macroeconomics: Production, and F43 - Economic Growth of Open Economies
Creator: Conesa, Juan Carlos and Kehoe, Timothy Jerome, 1953- Series: Staff report (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 550 Abstract:
In the early 1970s, hours worked per working-age person in Spain were higher than in the United States. Starting in 1975, however, hours worked in Spain fell by 40 percent. We find that 80 percent of the decline in hours worked can be accounted for by the evolution of taxes in an otherwise standard neoclassical growth model. Although taxes play a crucial role, we cannot argue that taxes drive all of the movements in hours worked. In particular, the model underpredicts the large decrease in hours in 1975–1986 and the large increase in hours in 1994–2007. The lack of productivity growth in Spain during 1994–2015 has little impact on the model’s prediction for hours worked.
Mot-clé: Distortionary taxes, Total factor productivity, Hours worked, and Dynamic general equilibrium Assujettir: C68 - Computable General Equilibrium Models, E24 - Employment; Unemployment; Wages; Intergenerational Income Distribution; Aggregate Human Capital; Aggregate Labor Productivity, E13 - General Aggregative Models: Neoclassical, and H31 - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents: Household
Creator: Kehoe, Timothy Jerome, 1953-, Machicado, Carlos Gustavo, and Peres Cajías, José Alejandro, 1982- Series: Staff report (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 579 Abstract:
After the economic reforms that followed the National Revolution of the 1950s, Bolivia seemed positioned for sustained growth. Indeed, it achieved unprecedented growth from 1960 to 1977. Mistakes in economic policies, especially the rapid accumulation of debt due to persistent deficits and a fixed exchange rate policy during the 1970s, led to a debt crisis that began in 1977. From 1977 to 1986, Bolivia lost almost all the gains in GDP per capita that it had achieved since 1960. In 1986, Bolivia started to grow again, interrupted only by the financial crisis of 1998–2002, which was the result of a drop in the availability of external financing. Bolivia has grown since 2002, but government policies since 2006 are reminiscent of the policies of the 1970s that led to the debt crisis, in particular, the accumulation of external debt and the drop in international reserves due to a de facto fixed exchange rate since 2012.
Mot-clé: Hyperinflation, Bolivia, Fiscal policy, Monetary policy, and Public enterprises Assujettir: N16 - Economic History: Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics; Industrial Structure; Growth; Fluctuations: Latin America; Caribbean, E52 - Monetary Policy, E63 - Comparative or Joint Analysis of Fiscal and Monetary Policy; Stabilization; Treasury Policy, and H63 - National Debt; Debt Management; Sovereign Debt
Creator: Conesa, Juan Carlos, Kehoe, Timothy Jerome, 1953-, and Ruhl, Kim J. Series: Staff report (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 401 Abstract:
This paper is a primer on the great depressions methodology developed by Cole and Ohanian (1999, 2007) and Kehoe and Prescott (2002, 2007). We use growth accounting and simple dynamic general equilibrium models to study the depression that occurred in Finland in the early 1990s. We find that the sharp drop in real GDP over the period 1990–93 was driven by a combination of a drop in total factor productivity (TFP) during 1990–92 and of increases in taxes on labor and consumption and increases in government consumption during 1989–94, which drove down hours worked in Finland. We attempt to endogenize the drop in TFP in variants of the model with an investment sector and with terms-of-trade shocks but are unsuccessful.
Assujettir: F59 - International Relations and International Political Economy: Other, F41 - Open Economy Macroeconomics, E50 - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit: General, E13 - General Aggregative Models: Neoclassical, and E32 - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
Creator: Kehoe, Timothy Jerome, 1953- and Ruhl, Kim J. Series: Staff report (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 414 Abstract:
A sudden stop of capital flows into a developing country tends to be followed by a rapid switch from trade deficits to surpluses, a depreciation of the real exchange rate, and decreases in output and total factor productivity. Substantial reallocation takes place from the nontraded sector to the traded sector. We construct a multisector growth model, calibrate it to the Mexican economy, and use it to analyze Mexico's 1994–95 crisis. When subjected to a sudden stop, the model accounts for the trade balance reversal and the real exchange rate depreciation, but it cannot account for the decreases in GDP and TFP. Extending the model to include labor frictions and variable capital utilization, we still find that it cannot quantitatively account for the dynamics of output and productivity without losing the ability to account for the movements of other variables.
Mot-clé: Sudden stop, Nontradable, Real exchange rate, Developing country crisis, Total factor productivity, Mexico, and Tradable Assujettir: F32 - Current Account Adjustment; Short-term Capital Movements, O47 - Empirical Studies of Economic Growth; Aggregate Productivity; Cross-Country Output Convergence, F34 - International Lending and Debt Problems, O54 - Economywide Country Studies: Latin America; Caribbean, F21 - International Investment; Long-term Capital Movements, F43 - Economic Growth of Open Economies, O41 - One, Two, and Multisector Growth Models, and E21 - Macroeconomics: Consumption; Saving; Wealth
Creator: Fernández de Córdoba, Gonzalo, 1966- and Kehoe, Timothy Jerome, 1953- Series: Staff report (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 421 Abstract:
Studying the experience of countries that have experienced great depressions during the twentieth century teaches us that massive public interventions in the economy to maintain employment and investment during a financial crisis can, if they distort incentives enough, lead to a great depression.