Creator: Bartelsman, Eric J. and Beaulieu, J. Joseph. Series: Joint committee on business and financial analysis Abstract:
This paper is the first of a series of explorations in the relative performance and sources of productivity growth of U.S. businesses across industries and legal structure. In order to assemble the disparate data from various sources to develop a coherent productivity database, we developed a general system to manage data. The paper describes this system and then applies it by building such a database. The paper presents updated estimates of gross output, intermediate input use and value added using the BEA=s GPO data set. It supplements these data with estimates of missing data on intermediate input use and prices for the 1977-1986 period, and it concords these data, which are organized on a 1972 SIC basis, to the 1987 SIC in order to have consistent time series covering the last twenty-four years. It further refines these data by disaggregating them by legal form of organization. The paper also presents estimates of labor hours, investment, capital services and, consequently, multifactor productivity disaggregated by industry and legal form of organization, and it analyzes the contribution of various industries and business organizations to aggregate productivity. The paper also reconsiders these estimates in light of the surge in spending in advance of the century-date change.
Keyword: Industrial productivity, Database design, Labor productivity, and Legal form of organization Subject (JEL): D24 - Production and organizations - Production ; Cost ; Capital and total factor productivity ; Capacity and E23 - Macroeconomics : Consumption, saving, production, employment, and investment - Production
Creator: Becketti, Sean. Series: Business analysis committee meeting Abstract:
The new classical view that macroeconomic fluctuations can be modeled as an equilibrium system perturbed by transitory monetary disturbances has been challenged in recent years by another equilibrium view of fluctuations, the so-called real business cycle theory. In this latter framework, shocks to the production function induce both intertemporal substitution of labor supply and permanent shifts in the stochastic trend of output. Monetary shocks, on the other hand, play only a minor role in this view of the cycle. Much of the empirical support for the real business cycle view of fluctuations is based on a re-examination of traditional methods for detrending economic time series. The issues raised by the real business cycle theorists are not new; indeed, they go back at least to the NBER's first business cycle studies. However, the real business cycle theorists attach a radical economic interpretation to what, on the surface, appears to be a purely technical note on the proper method for detrending economic data. This paper reviews the debate over stochastic trends, discusses the economic implications of the real business cycle interpretation of stochastic trend models, and weighs the time series evidence for some of the stronger claims made by real business cycle theorists. We conclude that, while this literature raises real and useful questions about the interpretation of observed fluctuations, the new classical view of the cycle is not ruled out by the data.
Subject (JEL): E13 - General aggregative models - Neoclassical and E32 - Prices, business fluctuations, and cycles - Business fluctuations ; Cycles
Creator: Huggett, Mark. and Ospina, Sandra. Series: Productivity and the industrial revolution Abstract:
A number of theoretical models of technology adoption have been proposed that emphasize technological switching, loss of expertise and subsequent technology-specific learning. These models imply that measured productivity may initially fall and then later rise after the adoption of a new technology. This paper investigates whether or not this implication is a feature of plant-level data from the Colombian manufacturing sector. We regress measures of productivity growth at the plant level on a plant-specific measure of technology adoption and its lagged values. We find that...
Keyword: Manufacturing, Embodied, Colombia, South America, Productivity, Technology, and Latin America Subject (JEL): D24 - Production and organizations - Production ; Cost ; Capital and total factor productivity ; Capacity, O14 - Economic development - Industrialization ; Manufacturing and service industries ; Choice of technology, L60 - Industry Studies: Manufacturing: General, and O33 - Technological change ; Research and development - Technological change : Choices and consequences ; Diffusion processes
Creator: Roberds, William. Series: Business analysis committee meeting Abstract:
One of the more significant developments in econometric modeling over the past decade has been the invention of the forecasting technique known as Bayesian vector autoregression (BVAR). This paper provides a detailed description of the process of specifying a BVAR model of quarterly time series on the U.S. macroeconomy. The postsample forecasting performance of the model is evaluated at an informal level by comparing the model's performance to certain naive forecasting methods, and is evaluated at a formal level by means of efficiency tests. Although the null hypothesis of efficiency is rejected for the model's forecasts, the accuracy of the model exceeds that of naive forecasting methods, and seems comparable to that of commercial forecasting firms for early quarter forecasts.
Keyword: BVAR, Vector autoregression, and Bayesian analysis Subject (JEL): C11 - Econometric and statistical methods : General - Bayesian analysis and C53 - Econometric modeling - Forecasting and other model applications
Creator: Martin, Vance, 1955- and Pagan, Adrian R. Series: Simulation-based inference in econometrics Abstract:
Procedures for computing the parameters of a broad class of multifactor continuous time models of the term structure based on indirect estimation methods are proposed. The approach consists of simulating the unknown factors from a set of stochastic differential equations which are used to compute synthetic bond yields. The bond yields are calibrated with actual bond yields via an auxiliary model. The approach circumvents many of the difficulties associated with direct estimation of this class of models using maximum likelihood. In particular, the paper addresses the identification issues arising from singularities in the yields and spreads which tend not to be recognised in existing estimation procedures and thereby overcome potential misspecification problems inherrent in direct methods. Indirect estimates of single and multifactor models are computed and compared with the estimates based on existing estimation procedures.
Keyword: Continous time models, Indirect estimation, Multifactor models, Term structure, Testing factor models, Stochastic differential equations, and Singularities Subject (JEL): C30 - Multiple or simultaneous equation models - General, C51 - Econometric modeling - Model construction and estimation, and G12 - General financial markets - Asset pricing ; Trading volume ; Bond interest rates
Creator: Diaz, Antonia. and Luengo-Prado, Maria José, 1972- Series: Advances in dynamic economics Abstract:
In most developed countries, housing receives preferential tax treatment relative to other assets. In particular (i) the housing services provided by owner-occupied housing (generally referred to as imputed rents) are untaxed and (ii) mortgage interest payments reduce taxable income. The potential economic distortions resulting from the unique treatment of housing may be substantial, especially in light of the fact that residential capital accounts for more than half of the assets in the U.S. In particular, this tax treatment distorts the households' portfolio composition, their saving rates and their tenure choice. In this paper we build a general equilibrium model populated by heterogeneous agents subject to idiosyncratic risk. We use this framework to quantitatively assess the macroeconomic and distributional distortions introduced by this preferential tax treatment. We also study the effects of alternative tax schemes which could correct the current system's bias.
Subject (JEL): D58 - General equilibrium and disequilibrium - Computable and other applied general equilibrium models, D31 - Distribution - Personal income, wealth, and their distributions, and H20 - Taxation, subsidies and revenue - General
Creator: Krusell, Per. and Ríos-Rull, José-Víctor. Series: Conference on economics and politics Abstract:
Some economic policies and regulations seem to have only one purpose: to prevent technological development and economic growth from occurring. In this paper, we attempt to rationalize such policies as outcomes of voting equilibria. In our environment, some agents will be worse off if the economy grows, since their skills are complementary to resources that can be allocated to growth-stimulating activities. In the absence of arrangements where votes are traded, we show that for some initial skill distributions, the economy may stagnate due to growth-preventing policies. Different initial skill distributions, however, lead to voting outcomes and policies in support of technological development, and to persistent economic growth. In making our argument formally, we use a dynamic model with induced heterogeneity in agents' skills. In their voting decisions, agents compare how they will be affected under each policy alternative, and then vote for the policy that maximizes their welfare.
Subject (JEL): O41 - One, Two, and Multisector Growth Models and O31 - Technological change ; Research and development - Innovation and invention : Processes and incentives
Creator: İmrohoroglu, Selahattin. Series: Macroeconomics with heterogenous agents, incomplete markets, liquidity constraints, and transaction costs Abstract:
This paper investigates the optimal tax structure in an overlapping generations model in which individuals face idiosyncratic income risk, borrowing constraints and lifetime uncertainty. The calibrated model economy produces some quantitative results that differ significantly from the findings of the previous research. The main finding in this imperfect insurance setup is that moving away from capital income taxation toward higher labor income taxation yields a (steady-state) welfare benefit of 1% of aggregate consumption compared with the 6% figure Lucas (1990) finds in an infinite-horizon, complete markets model. This is because replacing the tax on capital income with a higher tax on labor income redistributes resources away from the young working years during which borrowing constraints are more likely to bind. Furthermore, when the individuals have access to a private annuity market to insure against uncertain lifetimes, it becomes optimal to tax capital. When a consumption tax is made available, it is optimal to switch to consumption taxation. The welfare benefit from implementing this optimal plan is on the order of 1.5-3.2% of GNP.
Subject (JEL): H21 - Taxation, subsidies and revenue - Efficiency ; Optimal taxation and D52 - General equilibrium and disequilibrium - Incomplete markets
Creator: Platt, Glenn J. Series: Law and economics of federalism Abstract:
This paper develops a model of firm location where communities differ by exogenous endowments of a factor of production. Firms choose to locate based on local subsidies to production. Community and firm optimal strategies are then examined. Through the introduction of information asymmetries about the communities' endowments, equilibrium bidding strategies for communities are found. The results show that auction institutions used by firms may in fact be signaling on the part of communities. These results also indicate that community bids reveal information, and restrictions on this bidding may do more harm than good.
Keyword: Tax breaks, Subsidies, Plant location, Tax competition, and Asymmetric information Subject (JEL): H70 - State and local government ; Intergovernmental relations - General, R30 - Production analysis and firm location - General, and D80 - Information, knowledge, and uncertainty - General