The Q&A in this issue features seven questions about Large Fiscal Consolidation Attempts in the Past and Implications for Policymakers Today (by Fuad Hasanov and Paolo Mauro). The research summaries are "Booms and Busts" (by Roberto Piazza) and " Did Export Diversification Soften the Impact of the Global Financial Crisis?" (by Rafael Romeu). The issue also provides details on visiting scholars at the IMF (mainly from September through December 2011), as well as recently published IMF Working Papers and Staff Discussion Notes.
When estimating DSGE models, the number of observable economic variables is usually kept small, and it is conveniently assumed that DSGE model variables are perfectly measured by a single data series. Building upon Boivin and Giannoni (2006), we relax these two assumptions and estimate a fairly simple monetary DSGE model on a richer data set. Using post-1983 U.S.data on real output, inflation, nominal interest rates, measures of inverse money velocity, and a large panel of informational series, we compare the data-rich DSGE model with the regular - few observables, perfect measurement - DSGE model in terms of deep parameter estimates, propagation of monetary policy and technology shocks and sources of business cycle fluctuations. We document that the data-rich DSGE model generates a higher implied duration of Calvo price contracts and a lower slope of the New Keynesian Phillips curve. To reduce the computational costs of the likelihood-based estimation, we employed a novel speedup as in Jungbacker and Koopman (2008) and achieved the time savings of 60 percent.
This paper investigates the transmission of Israeli monetary policy since 1990. Two issues are addressed: the extent to which monetary policy exerts real effects, and the relative importance of different transmission channels. The impact of monetary restraints on aggregate industrial production is found to be small, although industrial sectors open to trade appear to suffer to a larger extent than closed sectors. Three transmission channels are analyzed by comparing the empirical evidence to that predicted by theory. While the credit and exchange rate channels may be important mechanisms of transmission, the interest rate channel finds weak support in the data.
This paper examines credit origins of the business cycle in the former Czechoslovakia. Industrial production is found to be cointegrated with various measures of bank credit during 1976-90 and it is shown that noninvestment credits are Granger-causing industrial production and that a feedback relation exists between investment credits and industrial production. Although the potency of credit supply shocks to industrial production has been changing, production decline (growth) seems to follow credit tightening (loosening). However, the paper confirms that credit shocks were only a minor part of the output decline in 1989-90.
This paper examines whether expansionary credit policy can help sustain output growth in transition economies, with particular reference to Ukraine’s experience since 1992. We find that, while real credit growth is indeed associated with higher output growth, an increase in the growth rate of nominal credit does not, in general equilibrium, stimulate output growth. Following a short-lived boom — caused by falling real wages — the increase in the growth rate of nominal credit leads to a decline in the level of output.
The paper discusses the case against a laissez faire approach to resource allocation and develops a model of supply bottlenecks. It argues that: (1) once budget constraints are hardened and credit markets begin to function appropriately, externalities associated with production bottlenecks and adjustment costs--other considerations aside--provide a case for subsidizing the costs of critical inputs for the state sector but not the new private sector; (2) the optimal subsidy declines as the private sector grows; and (3) the subsidy should be “financed” by taxing wage income in the state sector, which will strengthen incentives for workers to move.
This paper looks at whether the aggregate ERM money supply has been a useful predictor of short-term changes in inflation and growth, and long-term trends in price levels among the core ERM countries. The evidence suggests that over the period since 1987, when there have been no realignments, the ERM money supply performs at least as well, and arguably better, than the individual national aggregates in predicting nominal aggregates such as inflation and the price level, while neither money supply is a good predictor of real activity.
This paper explores the links between reforms, macroeconomic management and the occurrence of macroeconomic instability in China during the last decade, drawing upon previous analytical work and also employing the “Granger causality” test. It is concluded that the cycles did not originate with the reforms; rather their characteristics were modified by structural changes in the economy. It is further argued that the incompleteness of reforms (which renders macroeconomic management difficult) had the effect of exacerbating the cycles by increasing their amplitude and frequency. Finally, results from the Granger tests suggest that broad money would be a good intermediate target for monetary policy.
Empirical research has been conducted on the various theories of the business cycle over many countries. However, very little research has attempted to undertake a multi-country disaggregate investigation into the sources of output change. This paper decomposes fluctuations in industry output in a particular country into: (1) a nation specific shock; (2) an industry specific shock; (3) a world shock; and (4) an idiosyncratic factor. Using a dynamic factor analysis-state-space approach, the paper finds that the nation-specific shock is the most important impulse.