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Series:Finance and Economics Discussion Series 

Working Paper
The household spending response to the 2003 tax cut: evidence from survey data

The Jobs and Growth Tax Relief and Reconciliation Act of 2003 has been described as textbook fiscal stimulus. Using household survey data on the self-reported qualitative response to the tax cuts, we estimate that the boost to aggregate personal consumption expenditures from the child credit rebate and the reduction in withholdings raised the average level of real GDP in the second half of 2003 by 0.2 percent and by 0.3 percent in the first half of 2004. We also show that households in the survey were well aware of their tax cuts and tended to spend equally out of the child credit rebate and ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2005-32

Working Paper
Quantitative Easing and the “New Normal” in Monetary Policy

Interest rates may remain low and fall to their effective lower bound (ELB) often. As a result, quantitative easing (QE), in which central banks expand their balance sheet to lower long-term interest rates, may complement policy approaches focused on adjustments in short-term interest rates. Simulation results using a large-scale model (FRB/US) suggest that QE does not improve economic performance if the steady-state interest rate is high, confirming that such policies were not advantageous from 1960 to 2007. However, QE can offset a significant portion of the adverse effects of the ELB when ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2018-004

Working Paper
What drives movements in the unemployment rate? a decomposition of the Beveridge curve

This paper presents a framework to interpret movements in the Beveridge curve and analyze unemployment fluctuations. We decompose the unemployment rate into three main components: (1) a component driven by changes in labor demand--movements along the Beveridge curve and shifts in the Beveridge curve due to layoffs--(2) a component driven by changes in labor supply--shifts in the Beveridge curve due to quits, movements in-and-out of the labor force and demographics--and (3) a component driven by changes in the efficiency of matching unemployed workers to jobs. We find that cyclical movements ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2010-48

Working Paper
ATM surcharge bans and bank market structure: the case of Iowa and its neighbors

It is frequently claimed that high ATM surcharges actually attract customers to the banks that impose them, particularly if they operate large ATM networks. By exploiting as "natural experiments" two events associated with the lifting of surcharge bans in Iowa and in the states that neighbor Iowa, this paper seeks to test for the implications of this phenomenon as it applies to the market shares of banking institutions and to several aspects of market structure. Consistent with these implications, results of "difference-in-difference" analyses suggest that the shares of larger market ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2005-46

Working Paper
Production and inventory control at the General Motors Corporation during the 1920s and 1930s

Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 135

Working Paper
Stock prices, news, and economic fluctuations: comment

Beaudry and Portier (American Economoc Review, 2006) propose an identification scheme to study the effects of news shocks about future productivity in Vector Error Correction Models (VECM). This comment shows that their methodology does not have a unique solution, when applied to their VECMs with more than two variables. The problem arises from the interplay of cointegration assumptions and long-run restrictions imposed by Beaudry and Portier (2006).
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2013-08

Working Paper
Signal extraction for nonstationary multivariate time series with illustrations for trend inflation

This paper advances the theory and methodology of signal extraction by introducing asymptotic and finite sample formulas for optimal estimators of signals in nonstationary multivariate time series. Previous literature has considered only univariate or stationary models. However, in current practice and research, econometricians, macroeconomists, and policy-makers often combine related series - that may have stochastic trends--to attain more informed assessments of basic signals like underlying inflation and business cycle components. Here, we use a very general model structure, of widespread ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2012-45

Working Paper
A comparative anatomy of credit risk models

Within the past two years, important advances have been made in modeling credit risk at the portfolio level. Practitioners and policy makers have invested in implementing and exploring a variety of new models individually. Less progress has been made, however, with comparative analyses. Direct comparison often is not straightforward, because the different models may be presented within rather different mathematical frameworks. This paper offers a comparative anatomy of two especially influential benchmarks for credit risk models, J.P. Morgan's CreditMetrics and Credit Suisse Financial ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 1998-47

Working Paper
What's the Story? A New Perspective on the Value of Economic Forecasts

We apply textual analysis tools to measure the degree of optimism versus pessimism of the text that describes Federal Reserve Board forecasts published in the Greenbook. The resulting measure of Greenbook text sentiment, ?Tonality,? is found to be strongly correlated, in the intuitive direction, with the Greenbook point forecast for key economic variables such as unemployment and inflation. We then examine whether Tonality has incremental power for predicting unemployment, GDP growth, and inflation up to four quarters ahead. We find it to have significant and substantive predictive power for ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2017-107

Working Paper
Nothing is Certain Except Death and Taxes : The Lack of Policy Uncertainty from Expiring \"Temporary\" Taxes

What is the policy uncertainty surrounding expiring taxes? How uncertain are the approvals of routine extensions of temporary tax policies? To answer these questions, I use event studies to measure cumulative abnormal returns (CARs) for firms that claimed the U.S. research and development (R&D) tax credit from 1996-2015. In 1996, the U.S. R&D tax credit was statutorily temporary but was routinely extended ten times until 2015, when it was made permanent. I take the event dates as both when these ten extensions of the R&D tax credit were introduced into committee and when the extensions were ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2018-041

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