Self-Fulfilling Credit Cycles
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. In this paper we develop a tractable dynamic general equilibrium model in which unsecured firm credit arises from self-enforcing borrowing constraints, preventing an efficient capital allocation among heterogeneous firms. Unsecured credit rests on the value that borrowers attach to a good credit reputation which is a forward-looking ...
A Taylor Rule for Public Debt
Public debt is an important source of liquidity in economies facing shortages of private credit. It is also a bubble whose current price depends on expectations of what it will buy at future dates. In this article, the author studies how the government must balance the provision of sufficient liquidity against the risk of adverse expectations regarding future debt prices when private liquidity has dried up. The socially optimal balance is captured in a Taylor-like rule that sets a target for real public debt and manages expectations by overreacting to deviations from the target value. ...
Credit Cycles and Business Cycles
Unsecured firm credit moves procyclically in the United States and tends to lead gross domestic product, while secured firm credit is acyclical. Shocks to unsecured firm credit explain a far larger fraction of output fluctuations than shocks to secured credit. This article surveys a tractable dynamic general equilibrium model in which constraints on unsecured firm credit preclude an efficient capital allocation among heterogeneous firms. Unsecured credit rests on the value that borrowers attach to a good credit reputation, which is a forward-looking variable. Self-fulfilling beliefs over ...
Complex eigenvalues and trend-reverting fluctuations
Autoregressions of quarterly or annual aggregate time series provide evidence of trend-reverting output growth and of short-term dynamic adjustment that appears to be governed by complex eigenvalues. This finding is at odds with the predictions of reasonably parameterized, convex one-sector growth models, most of which have positive real characteristic roots. We study a class of one-sector economies, overlapping generations with finite life spans of L greater than or equal to 3, in which aggregate saving depends nontrivially on the distribution of wealth among cohorts. If consumption goods ...
Self-fulfilling credit cycles
This paper argues that self-fulfilling beliefs in credit conditions can generate endoge- nously persistent business cycle dynamics. We develop a tractable dynamic general equi- librium model in which heterogeneous firms face idiosyncratic productivity shocks. Capital from less productive firms is lent to more productive ones in the form of credit secured by collateral and also as unsecured credit based on reputation. A dynamic complemen- tarity between current and future credit constraints permits uncorrelated sunspot shocks to trigger persistent aggregate fluctuations in debt, factor ...
The optimal inflation target in an economy with limited enforcement
Presented at New Perspectives on Monetary Policy Design. Sponsored by the Bank of Canada and the Centre De Recerca en Economia Internacional. Barcelona, Spain.
Capital misallocation and aggregate factor productivity
We propose a sectoral?shift theory of aggregate factor productivity for a class of economies with AK technologies, limited loan enforcement, a constant production possibilities frontier, and finitely many sectors producing the same good. Both the growth rate and total factor productivity in these economies respond to random and persistent endogenous fluctuations in the sectoral distribution of physical capital which, in turn, responds to persistent and reversible exogenous shifts in relative sector productivities. Surplus capital from less productive sectors is lent to more productive ones in ...
Monetary policy as equilibrium selection
Can monetary policy guide expectations toward desirable outcomes when equilibrium and welfare are sensitive to alternative, commonly held rational beliefs? This paper studies this question in an exchange economy with endogenous debt limits in which dynamic complementarities between dated debt limits support two Pareto-ranked steady states: a suboptimal, locally stable autarkic state and a constrained optimal, locally unstable trading state. The authors identify feedback policies that reverse the stability properties of the two steady states and ensure rapid convergence to the constrained ...
Discretion, rules and volatility
A two-sector model of endogenous growth with leisure externalities
This paper considers the impact of leisure preference and leisure externalities on growth and labor supply in a Lucas  type model, as in Gmez , with a separable non-homothetic utility and the assumption that physical and human capital are both necessary inputs in both the goods and the education sectors. In spite of the non-concavities due to the leisure externality, the balanced growth path is always unique, which guarantees global stability for comparative-static exercises. We find that small differences in preferences toward leisure or in leisure externalities can generate ...