Unemployment in the Great Recession: A Comparison of Germany, Canada, and the United States
Journal of Labor Economics,
S1 Part 2
This paper looks at the surprisingly different labor market performance of the United States, Canada, Germany, and several other OECD countries during and after the Great Recession of 2008–9. A first important finding is that the large employment swings in the construction sector linked to the boom and bust in US housing markets is an important factor behind the different labor market performances of the three countries. We also find that cross-country differences among OECD countries are consistent with a conventional Okun relationship linking gross domestic product growth to employment performance.
16.12.2015 • 45/2015
German Economy: Strong domestic demand compensates for weak exports
The upturn of the German economy is expected to gain further momentum as a consequence of strong domestic demand. Real gross domestic product is expected to increase by 1.6% in 2016. Consumer prices are expected to rise by 0.9%. Unemployment is expected to rise slightly because it will take time to integrate refugees into the labour market.
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Financial Integration, Housing, and Economic Volatility
Journal of Financial Economics,
The Great Recession illustrates the sensitivity of the economy to housing. This paper shows that financial integration, fostered by securitization and nationwide branching, amplified the positive effect of housing price shocks on the economy during the 1994–2006 period. We exploit variation in credit supply subsidies across local markets from government-sponsored enterprises to measure housing price changes unrelated to fundamentals. Using this instrument, we find that house price shocks spur economic growth. The effect is larger in localities more financially integrated, through both secondary loan market and bank branch networks. Financial integration thus raised the effect of collateral shocks on local economies, increasing economic volatility.
Understanding the Great Recession
American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics,
We argue that the vast bulk of movements in aggregate real economic activity during the Great Recession were due to financial frictions. We reach this conclusion by looking through the lens of an estimated New Keynesian model in which firms face moderate degrees of price rigidities, no nominal rigidities in wages, and a binding zero lower bound constraint on the nominal interest rate. Our model does a good job of accounting for the joint behavior of labor and goods markets, as well as inflation, during the Great Recession. According to the model the observed fall in total factor productivity and the rise in the cost of working capital played critical roles in accounting for the small drop in inflation that occurred during the Great Recession.
How Firms Respond to Business Cycles: The Role of Firm Age and Firm Size
IMF Economic Review,
There remains considerable debate in the theoretical and empirical literature about the differences in the cyclical dynamics of firms by firm size. This paper contributes to the debate in two ways. First, the key distinction between firm size and firm age is introduced. The evidence presented in this paper shows that young businesses (that are typically small) exhibit very different cyclical dynamics than small/older businesses. The second contribution is to present evidence and explore explanations for the finding that young/small businesses were hit especially hard in the Great Recession. The collapse in housing prices accounts for a significant part of the large decline of young/small businesses in the Great Recession.
Fiscal Spending Multiplier Calculations Based on Input-Output Tables? An Application to EU Member States
Intervention. European Journal of Economics and Economic Policies,
Fiscal spending multiplier calculations have attracted considerable attention in the aftermath of the global financial crisis. Much of the current literature is based on VAR estimation methods and DSGE models. In line with the Keynesian literature we argue that many of these models probably underestimate the fiscal spending multiplier in recessions. The income-expenditure model of the fiscal spending multiplier can be seen as a good approximation under these circumstances. In its conventional form this model suffers from an underestimation of the multiplier due to an overestimation of the import intake of domestic absorption. In this article we apply input-output calculus to solve this problem. Multipliers thus derived are comparably high, ranging between 1.4 and 1.8 for many member states of the European Union. GDP drops due to budget consolidation might therefore be substantial in times of crisis.