Empirical analysis of the Fed’s monetary policy behavior suggests that the Fed smooths
interest rates— that is, the Fed moves the federal funds rate target in several small steps instead
of one large step with the same magnitude.
Post-World War II witnessed the largest housing boom in recent history. This paper develops a quantitative equilibrium model of tenure choice to analyze the key
determinants in the co-movement between home-ownership and house prices over the period 1940-1960.
Assuming a neoclassical production technology, this paper characterizes constrained efficient intertemporal wedges for the macro aggregate as well as the micro individual allocation of dynamic Mirrleesian economies. We frst construct "Pareto-Negishi weights" from the multipliers
on a sequence of temporary incentive constraints.
How efficiently are physical and human capital allocated across countries? Observing
differences in the countries' ratios of physical and human capital to output is not conclusive
evidence of distortions since those differences may be driven by factor intensity differences
in the countries' production functions.
Why has the U.S. black/white earnings gap remained around 40 percent for nearly 40 years? This paper's answer consists of a model of skill accumulation and neighborhood formation featuring a trap: Initial racial inequality and racial preferences induce racial segregation and asymmetric skill accumulation choices that perpetuate racial inequality.
Mortgages are long-term loans with nominal payments. Consequently, under incomplete
asset markets, monetary policy can affect housing investment and the economy through the
cost of new mortgage borrowing and real payments on outstanding debt.
The interest rate at which US firms borrow funds has two features: (i) it moves in a countercyclical fashion and (ii) it is an inverted leading indicator of real economic activity: low interest rates forecast booms in GDP, consumption, investment, and employment.
We study the endogenous choice to accept fiat objects as media of exchange and their implications
for nominal exchange rate determination. We consider a two-country environment with two
currencies which can be used to settle any transactions.
The supply and demand of credit are not always well aligned and matched, as is reflected
in the countercyclical excess reserve-to-deposit ratio and interest spread between the lending
rate and the deposit rate.
What determines the earnings of a worker relative to his peers in the same
occupation? What makes a worker fail in one occupation but succeed in another?
More broadly, what are the factors that determine the productivity of a worker-occupation
match? In this paper, we propose an empirical measure of skill mismatch
for a worker-occupation match, which sheds light on these questions.
Why did the marriage probability of single females in France after World War 1 rise 50%
above its pre-war average, despite a 33% drop in the male/female singles ratio? We conjecture
that war-time disruption of the marriage market generated an abnormal abundance of
men with relatively high marriage propensities.
The rise of China is no doubt one of the most important events in world economic history since
the Industrial Revolution. Mainstream economics, especially the institutional theory of
development based on a dichotomy of extractive vs. inclusive political institutions, is highly
inadequate in explaining China’s rise.
In U.S. data 1981–2012, unsecured firm credit moves procyclically and tends to lead GDP,
while secured firm credit is acyclical; similarly, shocks to unsecured firm credit explain a
far larger fraction of output fluctuations than shocks to secured credit.
Rehypothecation refers to the practice of spending a borrowed security
that is ostensibly assigned as collateral in a lending arrangement.
We develop a dynamic general equilibrium monetary model
where an “asset shortage” and incomplete markets motivates the formation
of credit relationships and the rehypothecation of assets.
We use cross-country data and instrumental variables widely used in the
literature to show that (i) institutions (such as property rights and the rule of law) do
not explain industrialization and (ii) agrarian countries and industrial countries have
entirely different determinants for income levels.
This study proposes and quantitatively assesses a terms-of-trade penalty for defaulting: defaulters must exchange more of their own goods for imports, which causes an adjustment to the equilibrium exchange rate.
Consider the following facts. In 1950, the richest countries attained an average of 8 years
of schooling whereas the poorest countries 1.3 years, a large 6-fold difference. By 2005, the
difference in schooling declined to 2-fold because schooling increased faster in poor than in
In this paper we compare the welfare effects of unemployment insurance (UI) with an universal
basic income (UBI) system in an economy with idiosyncratic shocks to employment. Both policies
provide a safety net in the face of idiosyncratic shocks.