Understanding Post-Covid Inflation Dynamics
Journal of Monetary Economics,
We propose a macroeconomic model with a nonlinear Phillips curve that has a flat slope when inflationary pressures are subdued and steepens when inflationary pressures are elevated. The nonlinear Phillips curve in our model arises due to a quasi-kinked demand schedule for goods produced by firms. Our model can jointly account for the modest decline in inflation during the Great Recession and the surge in inflation during the post-COVID period. Because our model implies a stronger transmission of shocks when inflation is high, it generates conditional heteroskedasticity in inflation and inflation risk. Hence, our model can generate more sizeable inflation surges due to cost-push and demand shocks than a standard linearized model. Finally, our model implies that the central bank faces a more severe trade-off between inflation and output stabilization when inflation is elevated.
COVID-19 Pandemic and Global Corporate CDS Spreads
Journal of Banking and Finance,
We examine the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the credit risk of companies around the world. We find that increased infection rates affect firms more adversely as reflected by the wider increase in their credit default swap (CDS) spreads if they are larger, more leveraged, closer to default, have worse governance and more limited stakeholder engagement, and operate in more highly exposed industries. We observe that country-level determinants such as GDP, political stability, foreign direct investment, and commitment to crisis management (income support, health and lockdown policies) also affect the sensitivity of CDS spreads to COVID-19 infection rates. A negative amplification effect exists for firms with high default probability in countries with fiscal constraints. A direct comparison between global CDS and stock markets reveals that the CDS market prices in a distinct set of corporate traits and government policies in pandemic times.
Corporate Culture and Firm Value: Evidence from Crisis
Journal of Banking and Finance,
Based on the Competing Values Framework (CVF), we score 10-K text to measure company culture in four types (collaborative, controlling, competitive, and creative) and examine its role in firm stability. We find that firms with higher controlling culture fared significantly better during the 2008–09 crisis. Firms with stronger controlling culture experienced fewer layoffs, less negative asset growth, greater debt issuance, and increased access to credit-line facilities during the crisis. The positive effect of the controlling culture is stronger among the financially-constrained firms. Overall, the controlling culture improves firm stability through greater support from capital providers.
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