Product market competition and the impact of price uncertainty on investment: some evidence from U.S. manufacturing industries
This paper examines the relationship between real exchange rates and real interest rates using three different approaches across four currencies and two horizons with 20 years of data. Each approach gives some encouragement that this relationship might hold, but each approach also encounters problems establishing the form or usefulness of the relationship. On balance, this paper contributes to the literature by finding more encouraging results than in earlier studies, but it still remains to be demonstrated that the real exchange rate-real interest rate relationship is the linchpin to ...
The role of energy in real business cycle models
Was China the first domino? assessing links between China and the rest of emerging Asia.
We assess links between China and the rest of emerging Asia. Some commentators have argued that China?s apparent devaluation in 1994 may have contributed to the Asian financial crisis. We argue that the devaluation was not economically important: The more-relevant exchange rate was a floating rate that was not devalued, and high Chinese inflation has led to a very sharp real appreciation of the currency. Although in principle, export competition with China could nevertheless have placed pressure on other Asian exporters, we argue that the striking feature of the data is the common movement ...
Regional labor fluctuations: oil shocks, military spending, and other driving forces
We quantify the contribution of various driving forces to state-level movements in unemployment rates and employment growth from 1956 to 1992. Our story of regional fluctuations in the U.S. economy has a large cast of players -- including government contract awards and the basing of military personnel -- but oil price shocks have been the leading actor since 1973. Beyond the magnitude and abruptness of oil price movements, the explanation for their pronounced regional effects has three essential elements: (i) regions differ in industry mix, (ii) industries differ in sensitivity to movements ...
China and emerging Asia: comrades or competitors?
Do increases in China's exports reduce exports of other emerging Asian economies? We find that correlations between Chinese export growth and that of other emerging Asian economies are actually positive (though usually not significant), even after controlling for trading-partner income growth and real effective exchange rates. We also present results from a VAR estimation of aggregate trade equations on the relative importance of foreign income and exchange rates in determining Asian export growth. Although exchange rates do matter for export performance, the income growth of trading partners ...
Minimum wages and firm employment: evidence from China
This paper studies how minimum wage policies affect firm employment in China using a unique county level minimum wage data set matched to disaggregated firm survey data. We investigate both the effect of imposing a minimum wage, and the effect of the policies that tightened enforcement in 2004. We find that the average effect of minimum wage changes is modest and positive, and that there is a detectable effect after enforcement reform. Firms have heterogeneous responses to minimum wage changes which can be accounted for by differences in their wage levels and profit margins: firms with high ...
Capital mobility and the output-inflation tradeoff
Our paper analyses the effects of restrictions on capital mobility on the output-inflation tradeoff. Using a stochastic version of the Mundell-Fleming model, we establish a theoretical presumption that an increase in restrictions on capital mobility should make the tradeoff parameter smaller, that is, a given change in the inflation rate should be associated with smaller movements in output. To measure the extent to which countries restrict capital movements, we construct an index using data from the IMF's Annual Report on Exchange Rate Arrangements and Exchange Restrictions. The estimates of ...
New evidence on cyclical and structural sources of unemployment
We provide cross-country evidence on the relative importance of cyclical and structural factors in explaining unemployment, including the sharp rise in U.S. long-term unemployment during the Great Recession of 2007-09. About 75% of the forecast error variance of unemployment is accounted for by cyclical factors?real GDP changes (?Okun?s Law?), monetary and fiscal policies, and the uncertainty effects emphasized by Bloom (2009). Structural factors, which we measure using the dispersion of industry-level stock returns, account for the remaining 25 percent. For U.S. long-term unemployment the ...