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Author:Lewis, Daniel J. 

Working Paper
A Robust Test for Weak Instruments with Multiple Endogenous Regressors

We extend the popular bias-based test of Stock and Yogo (2005) for instrument strength in linear instrumental variables regressions with multiple endogenous regressors to be robust to heteroskedasticity and autocorrelation. Equivalently, we extend the robust test of Montiel Olea and Pflueger (2013) for one endogenous regressor to the general case with multiple endogenous regressors. We describe a simple procedure for applied researchers to conduct our generalized first-stage test of instrument strength and provide efficient and easy-to-use Matlab code for its implementation. We demonstrate ...
Working Papers , Paper 2208

Working Paper
Dynamic Identification Using System Projections and Instrumental Variables

We propose System Projections with Instrumental Variables (SP-IV) to estimate dynamic structural relationships. SP-IV replaces lag sequences of instruments in traditional IV with lead sequences of endogenous variables. SP-IV allows the inclusion of controls to weaken exogeneity requirements, can be more efficient than IV with lags, and allows identification over many time horizons without creating many-weak-instruments problems. SP-IV also enables the estimation of structural relationships across impulse responses obtained from local projections or vector autoregressions. We provide a ...
Working Papers , Paper 2204

Working Paper
Do Monetary Policy Announcements Shift Household Expectations?

We use a decade of daily survey data from Gallup to study how monetary policy influences households' beliefs about economic conditions. We first document that public confidence in the state of the economy reacts instantaneously to certain types of macroeconomic news. Next, we show that surprises to the Federal Funds target rate are among the news that have statistically significant and instantaneous effects on economic confidence. Specifically, we find that a surprise increase in the target rate robustly leads to an immediate decline in household confidence, at odds with previous findings ...
Working Papers , Paper 1906

Report
Announcement-Specific Decompositions of Unconventional Monetary Policy Shocks and Their Macroeconomic Effects

I propose to identify announcement-specific decompositions of asset price changes into monetary policy shocks exploiting heteroskedasticity in intraday data. This approach accommodates both changes in the nature of shocks and the state of the economy across announcements, allowing me to explicitly compare shocks across announcements. I compute decompositions with respect to Fed Funds, forward guidance, asset purchase, and Fed information shocks for 2007-19. Only a handful of announcements spark significant shocks. Both forward guidance and asset purchase shocks lower corporate yields and ...
Staff Reports , Paper 891

Discussion Paper
Monitoring Real Activity in Real Time: The Weekly Economic Index

Economists are well-practiced at assessing real activity based on familiar aggregate time series, like the unemployment rate, industrial production, or GDP growth. However, these series represent monthly or quarterly averages of economic conditions, and are only available at a considerable lag, after the month or quarter ends. When the economy hits sudden headwinds, like the COVID-19 pandemic, conditions can evolve rapidly. How can we monitor the high-frequency evolution of the economy in “real time”?
Liberty Street Economics , Paper 20200330b

Working Paper
Do Monetary Policy Announcements Shift Household Expectations?

We use daily survey data from Gallup to assess whether households' beliefs about economic conditions are influenced by surprises in monetary policy announcements. We first provide more general evidence that public confidence in the state of the economy reacts to certain types of macroeconomic news very quickly. Next, we show that surprises to the Federal Funds target rate are among the news that have statistically significant and instantaneous effects on economic confidence. In contrast, surprises about forward guidance and asset purchases do not have similar effects on household beliefs, ...
Working Papers , Paper 1906

Working Paper
U.S. Economic Activity During the Early Weeks of the SARS-Cov-2 Outbreak

This paper describes a weekly economic index (WEI) developed to track the rapid economic developments associated with the response to the novel Coronavirus in the United States. The WEI shows a strong and sudden decline in economic activity starting in the week ending March 21, 2020. In the most recent week ending April 4, the WEI indicates economic activity has fallen further to -8.89% scaled to 4-quarter growth in GDP.
Working Papers , Paper 2011

Report
Do Monetary Policy Announcements Shift Household Expectations?

We use a decade of daily survey data from Gallup to study how monetary policy influences households’ beliefs about economic conditions. We first document that public confidence in the state of the economy reacts instantaneously to certain types of macroeconomic news. Next, we show that surprises to the federal funds target rate are among the news that have statistically significant and instantaneous effects on economic confidence. Specifically, we find that a surprise increase in the target rate robustly leads to an immediate decline in household confidence, at odds with previous findings ...
Staff Reports , Paper 897

Report
Robust inference in models identified via heteroskedasticity

Identification via heteroskedasticity exploits differences in variances across regimes to identify parameters in simultaneous equations. I study weak identification in such models, which arises when variances change very little or the variances of multiple shocks change close to proportionally. I show that this causes standard inference to become unreliable, outline two tests to detect weak identification, and establish conditions for the validity of nonconservative methods for robust inference on an empirically relevant subset of the parameter vector. I apply these tools to monetary policy ...
Staff Reports , Paper 876

Report
Identifying shocks via time-varying volatility

An n-variable structural vector auto-regression (SVAR) can be identified (up to shock order) from the evolution of the residual covariance across time if the structural shocks exhibit heteroskedasticity (Rigobon (2003), Sentana and Fiorentini (2001)). However, the path of residual covariances can only be recovered from the data under specific parametric assumptions on the variance process. I propose a new identification argument that identifies the SVAR up to shock orderings using the autocovariance structure of second moments of the residuals, implied by an arbitrary stochastic process for ...
Staff Reports , Paper 871

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