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Keywords:Business Cycles 

Working Paper
What Inventory Behavior Tells Us About How Business Cycles Have Changed

Beginning in the mid-1980s, the nature of U.S. business cycles changed in important ways, as made evident by distinctive shifts in the comovement and relative volatilities of key economic aggregates. These include labor productivity, hours, output, and inventories. Unlike the widely documented change in absolute volatility over that period, known as the Great Moderation, these shifts in comovement and relative volatilities persist into the Great Recession. To understand these changes, we exploit the fact that inventory data are informative about sources of business cycles. Specifically, they ...
Working Paper , Paper 14-6

Working Paper
Spousal Labor Supply Response to Job Displacement and Implications for Optimal Transfers

I document a small spousal earnings response to the job displacement of the family head. The response is even smaller in recessions, when additional insurance is most valuable. I investigate whether the small response is an outcome of the crowding-out effects of existing government transfers, using a model where labor supply elasticities with respect to transfers are in line with microeconomic estimates both in aggregate and across subpopulations. Counterfactual experiments reveal that generous transfers in recessions discourage the spousal labor supply significantly. I then show that the ...
Working Papers , Paper 2019-020

Working Paper
The Alpha Beta Gamma of the Labor Market

Based on patterns of employment transitions, we identify three different types of workers in the US labor market: α’s β’s and γ’s. Workers of type α make up over half of all workers, are most likely to remain on the same job for more than 2 years and, when they become unemployed, typically find a new job within 1 quarter. Workers of type γ comprise less than one-fifth of workers, have a low probability of staying on the same job for more than 2 years and, when they become unemployed, face a high probability of remaining jobless for more than 1 year. Workers of type β are in ...
Working Papers , Paper 2021-003

Working Paper
Firm Dynamics and the Origins of Aggregate Fluctuations

What drives aggregate fluctuations? I test the granular hypothesis, according to which the largest firms in the economy drive aggregate dynamics, by estimating a dynamic factor model with firm-level data and controlling for the propagation of firm-level shocks using multi-firm growth model. Each time series, the growth rate of sales of a specific firm, is decomposed in an unobserved common macroeconomic component and in a residual that I interpret as an idiosyncratic firm-level component. The empirical results suggest that, once I control for aggregate shocks, idiosyncratic shocks do not ...
International Finance Discussion Papers , Paper 1133

Working Paper
A Search-Based Neoclassical Model of Capital Reallocation

As a form of investment, the importance of capital reallocation between firms has been increasing over time, with the purchase of used capital accounting for 25% to 40% of firms total investment nowadays. Cross- firm reallocation of used capital also exhibits intriguing business-cycle properties, such as (i) the illiquidity of used capital is countercyclical (or the quantity of used capital reallocation across rms is procyclical), (ii) the prices of used capital are procyclical and more so than those of new capital goods, and (iii) the dispersion of firms' TFP or MPK (or the bene t of capital ...
Working Papers , Paper 2018-17

Working Paper
Trade Policy is Real News: Theory and Evidence

We evaluate the aggregate effects of changes in trade barriers when these changes can be implemented slowly over time and trade responds gradually to changes in trade barriers because firm-level trade costs make exporting a dynamic decision. Our model shows how expectations of changes in trade barriers affect the economy. We find that while decreases in trade barriers increase economic activity, expectations of lower future trade barriers temporarily decrease investment, hours worked, and output. Further- more, canceling an expected decline in future trade barriers raises investment and ...
International Finance Discussion Papers , Paper 1330

Working Paper
Cross-Sectional Financial Conditions, Business Cycles and The Lending Channel

I document business cycle properties of the full cross-sectional distributions of U.S. stock returns and credit spreads from financial and nonfinancial firms. The skewness of returns of financial firms (SRF) best predicts economic activity, while being a barometer for lending conditions. SRF also affects firm-level investment beyond firms' balance sheets, and adverse SRF shocks lead to macroeconomic downturns with tighter lending conditions in vector autoregressions (VARs). These results are consistent with a lending channel in which cross-sectional financial firms' balance sheets play a ...
International Finance Discussion Papers , Paper 1335

Working Paper
The Alpha Beta Gamma of the Labor Market

Using a large panel dataset of US workers, we calibrate a search-theoretic model of the labor market, where workers are heterogeneous with respect to the parameters governing their employment transitions. We first approximate heterogeneity with a discrete number of latent types, and then calibrate type-specific parameters by matching type-specific moments. Heterogeneity is well approximated by 3 types: αs, βs and γs. Workers of type α find employment quickly because they have large gains from trade, and stick to their jobs because their productivity is similar across jobs. Workers of type ...
Working Papers , Paper 2021-003

Working Paper
How Should Unemployment Insurance Vary over the Business Cycle?

We study optimal unemployment insurance (UI) over the business cycle using a heterogeneous agent job search model with aggregate risk and incomplete markets. We validate the model-implied micro and macro labor market elasticities to changes in UI generosity against existing estimates, and provide an explanation for divergent empirical findings. We show that generating the observed demographic differences between UI recipients and non-recipients is critical in determining the magnitudes of these elasticities. We find that the optimal policy features countercyclical replacement rates with ...
Working Papers , Paper 2019-022

Working Paper
Measuring Geopolitical Risk

We present a monthly indicator of geopolitical risk based on a tally of newspaper articles covering geopolitical tensions, and examine its evolution and effects since 1985. The geopolitical risk (GPR) index spikes around the Gulf War, after 9/11, during the 2003 Iraq invasion, during the 2014 Russia-Ukraine crisis, and after the Paris terrorist attacks. High geopolitical risk leads to a decline in real activity, lower stock returns, and movements in capital flows away from emerging economies and towards advanced economies. When we decompose the index into threats and acts components, the ...
International Finance Discussion Papers , Paper 1222

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