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July/August 2005, 
Vol. 87, No. 4
Posted 2005-07-01

Productivity and the Post-1990 U.S. Economy

by Ellen R. McGrattan and Edward C. Prescott

In this paper, the authors show that ignoring corporate intangible investments gives a distorted picture of the post-1990 U.S. economy. In particular, ignoring intangible investments in the late 1990s leads one to conclude that productivity growth was modest, corporate profits were low, and corporate investment was at moderate levels. In fact, the late 1990s was a boom period for productivity growth, corporate profits, and corporate investment.





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