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Author:Barnes, Michelle L. 

Working Paper
The forecasting power of consumer attitudes for consumer spending

The widely studied Reuters/Michigan Index of Consumer Sentiment is constructed from the answers to five questions from the more comprehensive Reuters/Michigan Surveys of Consumers. Yet little work has been done on what predictive power the information taken from this more thorough compilation of consumer attitudes and expectations may have for forecasting consumption expenditures. The authors construct a limited set of real-time summary measures for 42 questions selected from these broader Surveys corresponding to three broad economic determinants of consumption?income and wealth, prices, and ...
Working Papers , Paper 14-10

Discussion Paper
Alternative measures of the Federal Reserve banks' cost of equity capital

The Monetary Control Act of 1980 requires the Federal Reserve System to provide payment services to depository institutions through the twelve Federal Reserve Banks at prices that fully reflect the costs a private-sector provider would incur, including a cost of equity capital (COE). Although Fama and French (1997) conclude that COE estimates are ?woefully? and ?unavoidably? imprecise, the Reserve Banks require such an estimate every year. We examine several COE estimates based on the Capital Asset Pricing Model (CAPM) and compare them using econometric and materiality criteria. Our results ...
Public Policy Discussion Paper , Paper 05-2

Briefing
Cyclical versus secular: decomposing the recent decline in U.S. labor force participation

Since the start of the Great Recession, one of the most striking developments in the U.S. labor market has been the pronounced decline in the labor force participation rate. The crucial issue in interpreting the decline in U.S. labor force participation is how much of the decline reflects cyclical factors and how much reflects more persistent developments such as the demographic effects of an aging population. We provide a decomposition of cyclical versus trend movements in the labor force participation rate, informed by the joint dynamics of this variable with the employment-to-population ...
Public Policy Brief

Report
A post-mortem of the life insurance industry's bid for capital during the financial crisis

The 2008?2009 financial crisis was the most serious shock to the U.S. financial system since the Great Depression of the 1930s. A number of large financial institutions failed during the crisis. Many institutions that survived did so only because of extraordinary actions undertaken by company management to maintain solvency, or through the extension of extraordinary support by the federal government and the Federal Reserve System. The impact of the financial crisis on the banking sector has been the subject of extensive research, discussion, and debate. Academic and policy researchers, as ...
Current Policy Perspectives , Paper 15-8

Working Paper
The behavior of China's stock prices in response to the proposal and approval of bonus issues

Event study analysis is applied to investigate stock price reaction to the announcement of bonus issues for the emerging stock markets of China. Results show that the issues with a high bonus ratio (number of bonus shares in the issue/number of existing shares) usually attract positive returns for both Chinese (A-share traders) and foreign (B-share traders) residents. Issues with a low bonus ratio are rewarded with negative returns for A-share traders and do not stimulate significant activity by B-share traders. The hypothesis of semi-strong form market efficiency is rejected only for ...
Working Papers , Paper 02-1

Working Paper
Alternative measures of the Federal Reserve banks' cost of equity capital

The Monetary Control Act of 1980 requires the Federal Reserve System to provide payment services to depository institutions through the twelve Federal Reserve Banks at prices that fully reflect the costs a private-sector provider would incur, including a cost of equity capital (COE). Although Fama and French (1997) conclude that COE estimates are ?woefully? and ?unavoidably? imprecise, the Reserve Banks require such an estimate every year. We examine several COE estimates based on the CAPM model and compare them using econometric and materiality criteria. Our results suggests that the ...
Working Paper Series , Paper 2005-06

Working Paper
Estimation of forward-looking relationships in closed form: an application to the New Keynesian Phillips curve

We illustrate the importance of placing model-consistent restrictions on expectations in the estimation of forward-looking Euler equations. In two-stage limited-information settings where first-stage estimates are used to proxy for expectations, parameter estimates can differ substantially, depending on whether these restrictions are imposed or not. This is shown in an application to the New Keynesian Phillips Curve (NKPC), first in a Monte Carlo exercise, and then on actual data. The closed-form (CF) estimates require by construction that expectations of inflation be model-consistent at all ...
Working Papers , Paper 11-3

Journal Article
Inside and outside bounds: threshold estimates of the Phillips curve

Over the past 30 years, debates about the usefulness of the Phillips curve for explaining inflation have been ongoing. One of the reasons for the recurring debate about the existence of an inflation and unemployment tradeoff is that there have been several instances when large movements in the unemployment rate have elicited little response in the inflation rate. In principle, these episodes of horizontal movement are consistent with a Phillips curve relationship; they just require the curve to shift in the same direction as the unemployment rate. Econometric representations of the Phillips ...
New England Economic Review

Working Paper
A quantile regression analysis of the cross section of stock market returns

Traditional methods of testing the Capital Asset Pricing Model (CAPM) do so at the mean of the conditional distribution. Instead, we test whether the conditional CAPM holds at other points of the distribution by utilizing the technique of quantile regression (Koenker and Bassett 1978, Buchinsky 1998). This method allows us to model the performance of firms or portfolios that underperform or overperform in the sense that the conditional mean under- or overpredicts the return of the portfolio; we interpret firms that fall in the lower (upper) quantiles as having received bad (good) news during ...
Working Papers , Paper 02-2

Working Paper
Internal sources of finance and the Great Recession

The rising stockpile of cash as a share of total assets at U.S. firms has intrigued economists since at least the paper of Bates, Kahle, and Stulz (2006), yet there has been relatively little work on where this cash has come from and how it is related to investment performance. We exploit Statement of Cash Flows data from Compustat to decompose firms' cash stocks and show that the rise in cash holdings has coincided with an increased willingness to save internally generated cash. We show that although investment is normally sensitive to externally generated cash, the increased sensitivity of ...
Working Papers , Paper 10-15

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