Effects of Fiscal Stimulus in Structural Models
American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics,
The paper subjects seven structural DSGE models, all used heavily by policymaking institutions, to discretionary fiscal stimulus shocks using seven different fiscal instruments, and compares the results to those of two prominent academic DSGE models. There is considerable agreement across models on both the absolute and relative sizes of different types of fiscal multipliers. The size of many multipliers is large, particularly for spending and targeted transfers. Fiscal policy is most effective if it has moderate persistence and if monetary policy is accommodative. Permanently higher spending or deficits imply significantly lower initial multipliers.
School Closures and Population Decline in Saxony-Anhalt
Wirtschaft im Wandel,
In rural areas school closures are often linked to a decline in population. Do school closures stimulate enhanced emigration? This paper analyses whether family migration is affected by the existence of primary schools. We conduct an empirical study for the East German province Saxony-Anhalt for the period 1991 to 2008. We find that primary schools significantly affect migration behaviour. After school closure municipalities experience a decrease in in-migration. Unexpectedly, controlling for cohort size, unobserved heterogeneity as well as for neighbourhood effects yields higher out-migration prior to school closure. Because the in-migration and the out-migration are of the same magnitude, in sum school closures have no observable impact on net-migration.
Human Capital and Fertility in Germany after 1990: Evidence from a Multi-Spell Model
IWH Discussion Papers,
We analyze the timing of birth of the first three children based on German panel
data (GSOEP) within a hazard rate framework. A random effects estimator is
used to accommodate correlation across spells. We consider the role of human
capital – approximated by a Mincer-type regression – and its gender-specific
effects on postponement of parenthood and possible recuperation at higherorder
births. An advantage of the use of panel data in this context consists in
its prospective nature, so that determinants of fertility can be measured when
at risk rather than ex-post, thus helping to reduce the risk of reverse causality.
The analysis finds evidence for strong recuperation effects, i.e., women with
greater human capital endowments follow, on average, a different birth history
trajectory, but with negligible curtailment of completed fertility.
The Transition to Post-industrial BMI Values among US Children
American Journal of Human Biology,
The trend in the BMI values of US children has not been estimated very convincingly because of the absence of longitudinal data. Our objective is to estimate time series of BMI values by birth cohorts instead of measurement years. We use five regression models to estimate the BMI trends of non-Hispanic US-born black and white children and adolescents ages 2-19 between 1941 and 2004. The increase in BMIZ values during the period considered was 1.3 (95% CI: 1.16; 1.44) among black girls, 0.8 for black boys, 0.7 for white boys, and 0.6 for white girls. This translates into an increase in BMI values of some 5.6, 3.3, 2.4, and 1.5 units, respectively. While the increase in BMI values started among the birth cohorts of the 1940s among black girls, the rate of increase tended to accelerate among all four ethnic/gender groups born in the mid-1950s to early-1960s. Some regional evidence leads to the conjecture that the spread of automobiles and radios affected the BMI values of boys already in the interwar period. We suppose that the changes in lifestyle associated with the labor saving technological developments of the 20th century are associated with the weight gains observed. The increased popularity of television viewing was most prominently associated with the contemporaneous acceleration in BMI gain. Am. J. Hum. Biol., 2009. © 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
Evaluating the German (New Keynesian) Phillips Curve
IWH Discussion Papers,
This paper evaluates the New Keynesian Phillips Curve (NKPC) and its hybrid
variant within a limited information framework for Germany. The main interest rests on the average frequency of price re-optimization of ﬁrms. We use the labor income share as the driving variable and consider a source of real rigidity by allowing for a ﬁxed ﬁrm-speciﬁc capital stock. A GMM estimation strategy is employed as well as an identiﬁcation robust method that is based upon the Anderson-Rubin statistic. We ﬁnd out that the German Phillips Curve is purely forward looking. Moreover, our point estimates are consistent with the view that ﬁrms re-optimize prices every two to three quarters. While these estimates seem plausible from an economic point of view, the uncertainties around these estimates are very large and also consistent with perfect nominal price rigidity where ﬁrms never re-optimize prices. This analysis also oﬀers some explanations why previous results for the German NKPC based on GMM diﬀer considerably. First, standard GMM results are very sensitive to the way how orthogonality conditions are formulated. Additionally, model misspeciﬁcations may be left undetected by conventional J tests. Taken together, this analysis points out
the need for identiﬁcation robust methods to get reliable estimates for the NKPC.