157 research outputs found

    Relative Labor Productivity and the Real Exchange Rate in the Long Run: Evidence for a Panel of OECD Countries

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    The Balassa-Samuelson model, which explains real exchange rate movements in terms of sectoral productivities, rests on two components. First, for a class of technologies including Cobb-Douglas, the model implies that the relative price of nontraded goods in each country should reflect the relative productivity of labor in the traded and nontraded goods sectors. Second, the model assumes that purchasing power parity holds for traded goods in the long-run. We test each of these implications using data from a panel of OECD countries. Our results suggest that the first of these two fits the data quite well. In the long run, relative prices generally reflect relative labor productivities. The evidence on purchasing power parity in traded goods is considerably less favorable. When we look at US dollar exchange rates, PPP does not appear to hold for traded goods, even in the long run. On the other hand, when we look at DM exchange rates purchasing power parity appears to be a somewhat better characterization of traded goods prices.

    How Do Monetary and Fiscal Policy Interact in the European Monetary Union?

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    Formation of the Euro area raises new questions about the coordination of monetary and fiscal policy. Using a New Neoclassical Synthesis (NNS) model, we show that a common monetary policy, responding to area-wide aggregates, has asymmetric effects on countries within the union, depending on whether they are large or small, or whether they have high or low debts. We analyze the implications of these asymmetries for the various countries welfare and for their fiscal policies. We also study rules for setting national tax and spending rates, rules that constrain movements in the deficit to GDP ratio. We ask whether these rules are necessary for the common monetary policy to be able to harmonize national inflation rates, and we analyze their effects on national welfare. We also discuss some potential failings of our model (and perhaps NNS models generally); in particular, our model's variance decompositions suggest that productivity shocks may play an inordinately large role, while fiscal shocks (or demand shocks generally) may play too small a role (even when 'rule of thumb' spenders are added).

    Monetary aggregates and liquidity in a neo-Wicksellian framework

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    Woodford (2003) describes a popular class of neo-Wicksellian models in which monetary policy is characterized by an interest-rate rule, and the money market and financial institutions are typically not even modeled. Critics contend that these models are incomplete and unsuitable for monetary-policy evaluation. Our Banks and Bonds model starts with a standard neo-Wicksellian model and then adds banks and a role for bonds in the liquidity management of households and banks. The Banks and Bonds model gives a more complete description of the economy, but the neo-Wicksellian model has the virtue of simplicity. Our purpose here is to see if the neo-Wicksellian model gives a reasonably accurate account of macroeconomic behavior in the more complete Banks and Bonds model. We do this by comparing the models’ second moments, variance decompositions and impulse response functions. We also study the role of monetary aggregates and velocity in predicting inflation in the two models.

    Trends in European productivity and real exchange rates

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    Durante la ultima decada se ha producido una disminucion sustancial de la tasa de inflacion en paises como España o Italia. Sin embargo, dicho comportamiento esconde un fenomeno de inflacion dual: la tasa de crecimiento de los precios en el sector de bienes no comerciables se ha situado de forma persistente por encima de la tasa en el sector de bienes comerciables. En este trabajo se ofrece una explicacion parcial de dicha divergencia en terminos de las diferencias existentes en la evolucion tendencial de la productividad del trabajo en ambos sectores. En concreto, la evidencia apunta a un menor crecimiento de la productividad en el sector de bienes no comerciables, lo que explicaria su mayor inflacion relativa como un fenomeno de equilibrio. A partir de esta interpretacion de los hechos se investigan sus consecuencias sobre el cumplimiento de los criterios de Maastricht, asi como sobre la posible existencia de diferenciales nacionales de inflacion despues de la formacion de la Union Monetaria Europea (UME). (mc) (bd) (ge) (mac