Creator: Boyd, John H. and Smith, Bruce D. (Bruce David), 1954-2002 Series: Working paper (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 522 Abstract:
We consider a two country growth model with international capital markets. These markets fund capital investment in both countries, and operate subject to a costly state verification (CSV) problem. Investors in each country require some external finance, but also provide internal finance, which mitigates the CSV problem. When two identical (except for their initial capital stocks) economies are closed, they necessarily converge monotonically to the same steady state output level. Unrestricted international financial trade precludes otherwise identical economies from converging, and poor countries are necessarily net lenders to rich countries. Oscillation in real activity and international capital flows can occur.
Keyword: CSV, Open economy, International lending, Costly state verification, Capital investment, Closed economy, Credit rationing, International capital markets, and Credit Subject (JEL): F34 - International Lending and Debt Problems and O16 - Economic Development: Financial Markets; Saving and Capital Investment; Corporate Finance and Governance
Creator: Aiyagari, S. Rao and Peled, Dan Series: Working paper (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 503 Abstract:
It is often argued that with a positively skewed income distribution (median less than mean) a majority voting over proportional tax rates would result in higher tax rates than those that maximize average welfare, and will accordingly reduce aggregate savings. We reexamine this view in a capital accumulation model, in which distorting redistributive taxes provide insurance against idiosyncratic shocks, and income distributions evolve endogenously. We find small differences of either sign between the tax rates set by a majority voting and a utilitarian government, for reasonable parametric specifications. We show how these differences reflect a greater responsiveness of a utilitarian government to the average need for the insurance provided by the tax-redistribution scheme. These conclusions remain true despite the fact that the model simulations produce positively skewed distributions of total income across agents.
Keyword: Votes, Taxes, and Income distribution Subject (JEL): E62 - Fiscal Policy and D72 - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
Creator: Green, Edward J. Series: Working paper (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 501 Abstract:
I consider two theories of the determination of political institutions. One of these theories stresses effects of changes in the balance of military power between the ruler and subjects on the distribution of property rights which the political system enforces. The other theory emphasizes the effect of changing informational constraints which require institutional changes to be made in order to maintain efficiency. I examine how each of these theories would apply to explaining the development of parliamentary government in thirteenth-century England. My general conclusion is that both theories are required to understand fully the process by which liberal political institutions emerge.
Keyword: History, Government, England, and Great Britain Subject (JEL): N43 - Economic History: Government, War, Law, International Relations, and Regulation: Europe: Pre-1913 and H11 - Structure, Scope, and Performance of Government
Creator: Braun, R. Anton Series: Working paper (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 506 Abstract:
This paper investigates the macroeconomic effects of cyclical fluctuations in marginal tax rates. It finds that systematically including tax variables in a standard real business cycle model substantially improves the model's ability to reproduce basic facts about postwar U.S. business cycle fluctuations. In particular, modeling fluctuations in personal and corporate income tax rates increases the model's predicted relative variability of hours and decreases its predicted correlation between hours and average productivity. Fluctuations in tax rates produce large substitution effects that alter the leisure/labor supply decision.
Keyword: Corporate tax , Taxes, Business cycle, Tax, Income tax, Tax rates, Real business cycle model, Productivity, and Taxation Subject (JEL): E32 - Business Fluctuations; Cycles, H25 - Business Taxes and Subsidies including sales and value-added (VAT), and H24 - Personal Income and Other Nonbusiness Taxes and Subsidies; includes inheritance and gift taxes
Creator: Jagannathan, Ravi and Wang, Zhenyu Series: Working paper (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 517 Abstract:
In empirical studies of the CAPM, it is commonly assumed that (a) the return to the value weighted portfolio of all stocks is a reasonable proxy for the return on the market portfolio of all assets in the economy, and (b) betas of assets remain constant over time. Under these assumptions, Fama and French (1992) find that the relation between average return and beta is flat. We argue that these two auxiliary assumptions are not reasonable. We demonstrate that when these assumptions are relaxed, the empirical support for the CAPM is surprisingly strong. When human capital is also included in measuring wealth, the CAPM is able to explain 28 percent of the cross sectional variation in average returns in the 100 portfolios studied by Fama and French. When, in addition, betas are allowed to vary over the business cycle, the CAPM is able to explain 57 percent. More important, relative size does not explain what is left unexplained after taking sampling errors into account.
Keyword: Stock prices and Capital Subject (JEL): G12 - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates
Creator: Chari, V. V., Christiano, Lawrence J., and Kehoe, Patrick J. Series: Working paper (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 520 Keyword: Business cycles, Policy analysis, Exogenous growth model, Monetary policy, Optimal taxation, Friedman rule, and Fiscal policy Subject (JEL): E52 - Monetary Policy and E32 - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
Creator: Braun, R. Anton and Christiano, Lawrence J. Series: Working paper (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 529 Abstract:
The money demand literature presents much conflicting evidence on this question. For example, Lucas (1988) reports unrestricted money demand regressions which seem to imply that long-run money demand elasticities are highly unstable across subsamples. At the same time, he also presents evidence from money demand regressions with the income elasticity restricted to unity which seem to suggest stability. We conduct a formal analysis which weighs these apparently conflicting facts to determine which hypothesis is more plausible; the hypothesis that money demand is stable, or the hypothesis that money demand is unstable. We find that the stability hypothesis is the more plausible one. Thus, according to our data set, the answer to the question in the title is "yes".
Keyword: M1, Money supply, Money demand, Regression analysis, and Money demand regressions Subject (JEL): E41 - Demand for Money and E51 - Money Supply; Credit; Money Multipliers
Creator: Geweke, John Series: Working paper (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 532 Abstract:
This paper integrates and extends some recent computational advances in Bayesian inference with the objective of more fully realizing the Bayesian promise of coherent inference and model comparison in economics. It combines Markov chain Monte Carlo and independence Monte Carlo with importance sampling to provide an efficient and generic method for updating posterior distributions. It exploits the multiplicative decomposition of marginalized likelihood into predictive factors, to compute posterior odds ratios efficiently and with minimal further investment in software. It argues for the use of predictive odds ratios in model comparison in economics. Finally, it suggests procedures for public reporting that will enable remote clients to conveniently modify priors, form posterior expectations of their own functions of interest, and update the posterior distribution with new observations. A series of examples explores the practicality and efficiency of these methods.
This paper was prepared for the inaugural Colin Clark Lecture, Australasian Meetings of the Econometric Society, July 1994.
Keyword: Computation, Model comparison, Bayesian inference, and Econometric modeling Subject (JEL): C53 - Forecasting Models; Simulation Methods and C11 - Bayesian Analysis: General