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Jel Classification:C63 

Working Paper
Applications of Markov Chain Approximation Methods to Optimal Control Problems in Economics

In this paper we explore some of the benefits of using the finite-state Markov chain approximation (MCA) method of Kushner and Dupuis (2001) to solve continuous-time optimal control problems. We first show that the implicit finite-difference scheme of Achdou et al. (2017) amounts to a limiting form of the MCA method for a certain choice of approximating chains and policy function iteration for the resulting system of equations. We then illustrate the benefits of departing from policy function iteration by showing that using variations of modified policy function iteration to solve income ...
Working Papers , Paper 21-04

Working Paper
Likelihood Evaluation of Models with Occasionally Binding Constraints

Applied researchers interested in estimating key parameters of DSGE models face an array of choices regarding numerical solution and estimation methods. We focus on the likelihood evaluation of models with occasionally binding constraints. We document how solution approximation errors and likelihood misspecification, related to the treatment of measurement errors, can interact and compound each other.
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2019-028

Working Paper
Efficient Computation with Taste Shocks

Taste shocks result in nondegenerate choice probabilities, smooth policy functions, continuous demand correspondences, and reduced computational errors. They also cause significant computational cost when the number of choices is large. However, I show that, in many economic models, a numerically equivalent approximation may be obtained extremely efficiently. If the objective function has increasing differences (a condition closely tied to policy function monotonicity) or is concave in a discrete sense, the proposed algorithms are O(n log n) for n states and n choice--a drastic improvement ...
Working Paper , Paper 19-15

Working Paper
A Generalized Approach to Indeterminacy in Linear Rational Expectations Models

We propose a novel approach to deal with the problem of indeterminacy in Linear Rational Expectations models. The method consists of augmenting the original state space with a set of auxiliary exogenous equations to provide the adequate number of explosive roots in presence of indeterminacy. The solution in this expanded state space, if it exists, is always determinate, and is identical to the indeterminate solution of the original model. The proposed approach accommodates determinacy and any degree of indeterminacy, and it can be implemented even when the boundaries of the determinacy region ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2019-033

Working Paper
Optimal monetary policy regime switches

Given regime switches in the economy?s growth rate, optimal monetary policy rules may respond by switching policy parameters. These optimized parameters differ across regimes and from the optimal choice under fixed regimes, particularly in the inflation target and interest rate inertia. Optimal switching rules produce welfare gains relative to constant rules, with switches in the implicit real interest rate used for policy and the degree of interest rate inertia producing the largest gains. However, gains from switching rules decrease if the monetary authority trades-off the probability of ...
Research Working Paper , Paper RWP 16-7

Working Paper
Optimal Monetary Policy Regime Switches

An economy that switches between high and low growth regimes creates incentives for the monetary authority to change its rule. As lower growth tends to produce lower real interest rates, the monetary authority has an incentive to increase the inflation target and increase the degree of inertia in setting rates in an attempt to keep the nominal rate positive. An optimizing monetary authority therefore responds to permanently lower growth by slightly increasing both the inflation target and inertia; focusing solely on the inflation target ignores a key margin of adjustment. With repeated growth ...
Working Paper Series , Paper 2019-3

Working Paper
Finite-Order VAR Representation of Linear Rational Expectations Models: With Some Lessons for Monetary Policy

This paper considers the characterization via finite-order VARs of the solution of a large class of linear rational expectations (LRE) models. I propose a unified approach that uses a companion Sylvester equation to check the existence and uniqueness of a solution to the canonical (first-order) LRE model in finite-order VAR form and a quadratic matrix equation to characterize it decoupling the backward- and forward-looking aspects of the model. I also investigate the fundamentalness of the shocks recovered. Solving LRE models by this procedure is straightforward to implement, general in its ...
Globalization Institute Working Papers , Paper 285

Working Paper
Rational Inattention via Ignorance Equivalence

We present a novel approach to finite Rational Inattention (RI) models based on the ignorance equivalent, a fictitious action with state-dependent payoffs that effectively summarizes the optimal learning and conditional choices. The ignorance equivalent allows us to recast the RI problem as a standard expected utility maximization over an augmented choice set called the learning-proof menu, yielding new insights regarding the behavioral implications of RI, in particular as new actions are added to the menu. Our geometric approach is also well suited to numerical methods, outperforming ...
Working Papers , Paper 20-24

Working Paper
Asymmetric Information and the Death of ABS CDOs

A key feature of the 2007 financial crisis is that for many securities trading had ceased; where trading did occur, market prices were well below intrinsic values, especially for ABS CDOs. One explanation is that information had been asymmetric, with sellers having better information than buyers. We first show the information advantages sellers had over buyers in both the issuance of CDOs and, through vertical integration, performance of the CDO collateral that could well have disrupted trading after the onset of the crisis. Using a ?workhorse" model for pricing securities under asymmetric ...
International Finance Discussion Papers , Paper 1075

Working Paper
The "Matthew Effect" and Market Concentration: Search Complementarities and Monopsony Power

This paper develops a dynamic general equilibrium model with heterogeneous firms that face search complementarities in the formation of vendor contracts. Search complementarities amplify small differences in productivity among firms. Market concentration fosters monopsony power in the labor market, magnifying profits and further enhancing the output share of high-productivity firms. The combination of search complementarities and monopsony power induce a strong "Matthew effect" that endogenously generates superstar firms out of uniform idiosyncratic productivity distributions. Reductions in ...
FRB Atlanta Working Paper , Paper 2021-4


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