National Bureau of Economic Research

Displaying 1-40 of 2033 results

  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Innovation And Productivity

    What do we know about the relationship between innovation and productivity among firms? The workhorse model of this relationship is presented and the implications of analysis using this model and the usually available data on product and process innovation are derived. The recent empirical evidence on the relationship between innovation...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Deregulation, Consolidation, And Efficiency: Evidence From U.S. Nuclear Power

    For the first four decades of its existence the U.S. nuclear power industry was run by regulated utilities, with most companies owning only one or two reactors. Beginning in the late 1990s electricity markets in many states were deregulated and almost half of the nation's 103 reactors were sold to...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Propose With A Rose? Signaling In Internet Dating Markets

    The large literature on costly signaling and the somewhat scant literature on preference signaling had varying success in showing the effectiveness of signals. The authors use a field experiment to show that even when everyone can send a signal, signals are free and the only costs are opportunity costs, sending...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Financial Literacy, Retirement Planning, And Household Wealth

    There is sample empirical evidence documenting widespread financial illiteracy and limited pension knowledge. At the same time, the distribution of wealth is widely dispersed and many workers arrive on the verge of retirement with few or no personal assets. In this paper, the authors investigate the relationship between financial literacy...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    A Model Of The Consumption Response To Fiscal Stimulus Payments

    A wide body of empirical evidence, based on randomized experiments, finds that 20-40 percent of fiscal stimulus payments (e.g. tax rebates) are spent on nondurable household consumption in the quarter that they are received. The authors develop a structural economic model to interpret this evidence. Their model integrates the classical...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Ethnic Innovation And U.S. Multinational Firm Activity

    This paper studies the impact that immigrant innovators have on the global activities of U.S. firms by analyzing detailed data on patent applications and on the operations of the foreign affiliates of U.S. multinational firms. The results indicate that increases in the share of a firm's innovation performed by inventors...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Country Size, International Trade, And Aggregate Fluctuations In Granular Economies

    This paper proposes a new mechanism by which country size and international trade affect macroeconomic volatility. The authors study a multi-country, multi-sector model with heterogeneous firms that are subject to idiosyncratic firm-specific shocks. When the distribution of firm sizes follows a power law with an exponent close to -1, the...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Behavioral Corporate Finance: An Updated Survey

    The authors survey the theory and evidence of behavioral corporate finance, which generally takes one of two approaches. The market timing and catering approach views managerial financing and investment decisions as rational managerial responses to securities mispricing. The managerial biases approach studies the direct effects of managers' biases and nonstandard...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Asset Liquidity And International Portfolio Choice

    The authors study optimal asset portfolio choice in a two-country search-theoretic model of monetary exchange. They allow assets not only to represent claims on future consumption, but also to serve as means of payment. Assuming foreign assets trade at a cost, they characterize equilibria in which different countries' assets arise...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Information Aggregation, Investment, And Managerial Incentives

    The authors study the interplay of share prices and firm decisions when share prices aggregate and convey noisy information about fundamentals to investors and managers. First, they show that the informational feedback between the firm's share price and its investment decisions leads to a systematic premium in the firm's share...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Is Leisure A Normal Good? Evidence From The European Parliament

    Prior to July 2009, salaries of the members of the European Parliament were paid by their home country and there were substantial salary differences between parliamentarians representing different EU countries. Starting in July 2009, the salary of each member of the Parliament is pegged to 38.5% of a European Court...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Rare Macroeconomic Disasters

    The potential for rare macroeconomic disasters may explain an array of asset-pricing puzzles. The authors' empirical studies of these extreme events rely on long-term data now covering 28 countries for consumption and 40 for GDP. A baseline model calibrated with observed peak-to-trough disaster sizes accords with the average equity premium...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Spillover Effects In Mutual Fund Companies

    The authors' paper investigates spillover effects across different business segments of publicly traded mutual fund management companies. They find that the prior stock price performance of the management company has a significant impact on the money flows and the management turnover of the affiliated mutual funds. Mutual funds managed by...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    A Gains From Trade Perspective On Macroeconomic Fluctuations

    Business cycles reflect changes over time in the amount of trade between individuals. In this paper, the authors show that incorporating explicitly intra-temporal gains from trade between individuals into a macroeconomic model can provide new insight into the potential mechanisms driving economic fluctuations as well as modify key policy implications....

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Are Corporate Default Probabilities Consistent With The Static Tradeoff Theory?

    Default probability plays a central role in the static tradeoff theory of capital structure. The authors directly test this theory by regressing the probability of default on proxies for costs and benefits of debt. Contrary to predictions of the theory, firms with higher bankruptcy costs, i.e., smaller firms and firms...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    The Extensive Margin, Sectoral Shares And International Business Cycles

    This paper documents some previously neglected features of sectoral shares at business cycle frequencies in OECD economies. In particular, the authors find that the nontraded sector share of output is as volatile as aggregate GDP, and that for most countries, the nontraded sector is distinctly countercyclical. While the standard international...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Consumption Risk-sharing And The Real Exchange Rate: Why Does The Nominal Exchange Rate Make Such A Difference?

    A basic prediction of efficient risk-sharing is that relative consumption growth rates across countries or regions should be positively related to real exchange rate growth rates across the same areas. The authors investigate this hypothesis, employing a newly constructed multi-country and multi-regional data set. Within countries, they find significant evidence...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Would People Behave Differently If They Better Understood Social Security? Evidence From A Field Experiment

    This paper presents the results of a field experiment in which a sample of older workers was randomized between a treatment group that was given information about key Social Security provisions and a control group that was not. The experiment was designed to examine whether it is possible to affect...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Exam High Schools And Academic Achievement: Evidence From New York City

    Publicly funded exam schools educate many of the world's most talented students. These schools typically contain higher achieving peers, more rigorous instruction, and additional resources compared to regular public schools. This paper uses a sharp discontinuity in the admissions process at three prominent exam schools in New York City to...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Covariances Versus Characteristics In General Equilibrium

    The authors question a deep-ingrained doctrine in asset pricing: if an empirical characteristic-return relation is consistent with investor "Rationality," the relation must be "Explained" by a risk factor model. The investment approach changes the big picture of asset pricing. Factors formed on characteristics are not necessarily risk factors: characteristics-based factor...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Equilibrium Wage And Employment Dynamics In A Model Of Wage Posting Without Commitment

    A rich but tractable variant of the Burdett-Mortensen model of wage setting behavior is formulated and a dynamic market equilibrium solution to the model is defined and characterized. In the model, firms cannot commit to wage contracts. Instead, the Markov perfect equilibrium to the wage setting game, characterized by Coles...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    A Simple Nonparametric Approach To Estimating The Distribution Of Random Coefficients In Structural Models

    The authors explore a nonparametric mixtures estimator for recovering the joint distribution of random coefficients in economic models. The estimator is based on linear regression subject to linear inequality constraints and is computationally attractive compared to alternative, nonparametric estimators. They provide conditions under which the estimated distribution function converges to...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Foreign Firms And Local Communities

    The literature on the effects of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) and activities of MultiNational Enterprises (MNEs) on host-countries has been almost exclusively focused on issues of productivity, growth and wages. The authors argue that this leaves quite a bit of important unexplored areas of inquiry, particularly those connected with the...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Systemic Risk Exposures: A 10-by-10-by-10 Approach

    Here, the author presents and discuss a "10-by-10-by-10" network-based approach to monitoring systemic financial risk. Under this approach, a regulator would analyze the exposures of a core group of systemically important financial firms to a list of stressful scenarios, say 10 in number. For each scenario, about 10 such designated...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    The Exact Law Of Large Numbers For Independent Random Matching

    This paper provides a mathematical foundation for independent random matching of a large population, as widely used in the economics literature. The authors consider both static and dynamic systems with random mutation, partial matching arising from search, and type changes induced by matching. Under independence assumptions at each randomization step,...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    The Importance Of The Meaning And Measurement Of "Affordable" In The Affordable Care Act

    This working paper highlights the practical importance of two critical but under-explored assumptions behind existing estimates of the Affordable Care Act (ACA)'s potential impact on the mix of employees and families who may have Employer-Sponsored health Insurance (ESI) in the future or may receive subsidies in the new health insurance...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Carry Trades And Risk

    Carry trades, in which an investor borrows a low interest rate currency and lends a high interest rate currency, have been profitable historically. The risk exposure of carry traders might explain their high returns, but conventional models of risk do not work because traditional risk factors, used to price the...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    The Continental Dollar: Initial Design, Ideal Performance, And The Credibility Of Congressional Commitment

    An alternative history of the Continental Dollar is constructed from the original resolutions passed by Congress. The Continental Dollar was a zero-interest bearer bond, not a fiat currency. The public could redeem it at face value in specie at fixed future dates. Being a zero-interest bearer bond, discounting must be...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Substitution Between Individual And Cultural Capital: Pre-migration Labor Supply, Culture And US Labor Market Outcomes Among Immigrant Women

    In this paper, the authors use New Immigrant Survey data to investigate the impact of immigrant women's own labor supply prior to migrating and female labor supply in their source country to provide evidence on the role of human capital and culture in affecting their labor supply and wages in...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Unemployment In Latin America And The Caribbean

    This paper constructs a new data set on unemployment rates in Latin America and the Caribbean and then explores the determinants of unemployment. The authors compare different countries, finding that unemployment is influenced by the size of the rural population and that the effects of government regulations are generally weak....

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Healthy, Wealthy And Wise? Revisited: An Analysis Of The Causal Pathways From Socio-Economic Status To Health

    Much has been said about the stylized fact that the economically successful are not only wealthier but also healthier than the less affluent. There is little doubt about the existence of this socio-economic gradient in health, but there remains a vivid debate about its source. In this paper, the authors...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Country Heterogeneity And The International Evidence On The Effects Of Fiscal Policy

    This paper shows how the richer frequency and variety of fiscal policy shocks available in an international sample can be analyzed recognizing the heterogeneity that exists across different countries. The main conclusion of the authors' empirical analysis is that the question "What is the fiscal policy multiplier" is an ill-posed...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Vertical Integration And Optimal Reimbursement Policy

    Health care providers may vertically integrate not only to facilitate coordination of care, but also for strategic reasons that may not be in patients' best interests. Optimal Medicare reimbursement policy depends upon the extent to which each of these explanations is correct. To investigate, the authors compare the consequences of...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Labor Market Dysfunction During The Great Recession

    This paper documents the abnormally slow recovery in the labor market during the Great Recession, and analyzes how mortgage modification policies contributed to delayed recovery. By making modifications means-tested by reducing mortgage payments based on a borrower's current income, these programs change the incentive for households to relocate from a...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Why Didn't Canada Have A Banking Crisis In 2008

    The financial crisis of 2008 engulfed the banking system of the United States and many large European countries. Canada was a notable exception. In this paper, the authors argue that the structure of financial systems is path dependent. The relative stability of the Canadian banks in the recent crisis compared...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Credit Shocks And Aggregate Fluctuations In An Economy With Production Heterogeneity

    The authors study the cyclical implications of credit market imperfections in a calibrated dynamic, stochastic general equilibrium model wherein firms face persistent shocks to aggregate and individual productivity. In their model economy, optimal capital reallocation is distorted by two frictions: collateralized borrowing and partial capital irreversibility yielding (S,s) firm-level investment...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Is The Foreclosure Crisis Making Us Sick?

    The authors investigate the relationship between foreclosure activity and the health of residents using zip code level longitudinal data. They focus on Arizona, California, Florida, and New Jersey, four states that have been among the hardest hit by the foreclosure crisis. They combine foreclosure data for 2005 to 2009 from...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    The Impact Of Trade On Organization And Productivity

    A firm's productivity depends on how production is organized given the level of demand for its product. To capture this mechanism, the authors develop a theory of an economy where firms with heterogeneous demands use labor and knowledge to produce. Entrepreneurs decide the number of layers of management and the...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    A Political Theory Of Populism

    When voters fear that politicians may have a right-wing bias or that they may be influenced or corrupted by the rich elite, signals of true left-wing conviction are valuable. As a consequence, even a moderate politician seeking reelection chooses "Populist' policies - i.e., policies to the left of the median...

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  • White Papers // Aug 2011

    Japanese Government Debt And Sustainability Of Fiscal Policy

    The authors construct quarterly series of the revenues, expenditures, and debt outstanding for Japan from 1980 to 2010, and analyze the sustainability of the fiscal policy. They pursue three approaches to examine the sustainability. First, they calculate the minimum tax rate that stabilizes the debt to GDP ratio given the...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Cumulative Effects Of Job Characteristics On Health

    The authors examine whether the job characteristics of physical demands and environmental conditions affect individual's health. Five-year cumulative measures of these job characteristics are used to reflect findings in the biologic and physiologic literature that indicate that cumulative exposure to hazards and stresses harms health. To create the analytic sample,...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Transmission Of The U.S. Subprime Crisis To Emerging Markets: Evidence On The Decoupling-Recoupling Hypothesis

    The authors find that emerging markets appeared to be somewhat insulated from developments in U.S. financial markets from early 2007 to summer 2008. From that point on, however, emerging markets responded very strongly to the deteriorating situation in the U.S. financial system and real economy. Policy measures taken in emerging...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Credit Constraints, Cyclical Fiscal Policy And Industry Growth

    This paper evaluates whether the cyclical pattern of fiscal policy can affect growth. The authors first build a simple endogenous growth model where entrepreneurs can invest either in short-run projects or in long-term growth enhancing projects. Long-term projects involve a liquidity risk which credit constrained firms try to overcome by...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Stepping Off The Wage Escalator: The Effects Of Wage Growth On Equilibrium Employment

    This paper emphasizes the role of wage growth in shaping work incentives. It provides an analytical framework for labor supply in the presence of a return to labor market experience and aggregate productivity growth. A key finding of the theory is that there is an interaction between these two forms...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Public Policy, Health Insurance And The Transition To Adulthood

    This paper assesses the impact of two recent policies designed to increase insurance coverage for older teens and young adults. The introduction of SCHIP in 1997 enabled low and moderate income teens up to age 19 to gain access to public health insurance. More recent policies adopted by a number...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Global Savings And Global Investment: The Transmission Of Identified Fiscal Shocks

    This paper examines the effect of exogenous shocks to savings on world capital markets. Using the exogenous shocks to US tax policy identified by Romer & Romer, the authors trace the impact of an exogenous shock to savings through the income accounting identities of the US and the rest of...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    The Long-Term Effects Of Military Conscription On Mortality: Estimates From The Vietnam-era Draft Lottery

    Research on the effects of Vietnam military service suggests that Vietnam veterans experienced significantly higher mortality than both non-Vietnam veterans and the civilian population at large. These results, however, may be biased by non-random selection into the military if unobserved background differences between veterans and non-veterans affect mortality directly. This...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Default, Framing And Spillover Effects: The Case Of Lifecycle Funds In 401(k) Plans

    Important behavioral factors such as default and framing effects are increasingly being employed to optimize decision-making in a variety of settings, including individually-directed retirement plans. Yet such approaches may have unintended "Spillover" effects, as the authors show with regard to the introduction of lifecycle funds in U.S. 401(k) plans. As...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Estimating The Impact Of Trade And Offshoring On American Workers Using The Current Population Surveys

    The authors link industry-level data on trade and offshoring with individual-level worker data from the Current Population Surveys. They find that occupational exposure to globalization is associated with larger wage effects than industry exposure. This effect has been overlooked because it operates between rather than within sectors of the economy....

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    The Effects Of Consumer-Directed Health Plans On Health Care Spending

    The authors use unique data from an insurer that exclusively offers high-deductible, "Consumer-directed" health plans to identify the effect of plan features, notably the spending account, on health care spending. The results show that the marginal dollar in the spending account is entirely spent on outpatient and pharmacy services. In...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Tax Reform, Delocation And Heterogeneous Firms

    The standard international tax model is extended to allow for heterogeneous firms when agglomeration forces are important thus allowing studying the relocation effects of taxes that vary according to firm size. The authors show that allowing for heterogeneity permits a given tax scheme to have an endogenously different effect on...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Risk Allocation, Debt Fueled Expansion And Financial Crisis

    In this paper the authors discuss how several macroeconomic features of the 2001-2009 periods may have resulted from a process in which financial markets were trying to allocate risk between heterogeneous agents when productive investment opportunities are scarce. They begin by showing how heterogeneity in terms of risk tolerance can...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Risk Sharing, Inequality And Fertility

    The authors use an extended Barro-Becker model of endogenous fertility, in which parents are heterogeneous in their labor productivity, to study the efficient degree of consumption inequality in the long run. In the environment a utilitarian planner allows for consumption inequality even when labor productivity is public information. They show...

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  • White Papers // May 2009

    Measuring The Benefits Of Product Variety With An Accurate Variety Set

    Recent studies have used import data to assess the impact of foreign varieties on prices and welfare for a home country. The reliance on import data has a number of limitations. First, these papers rely on goods categories defined by the Harmonized System. Second, they define varieties using the Armington...

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  • White Papers // May 2009

    Evaluating Rubin?s Causal Model For Measuring The Capitalization Of Environmental Amenities

    This paper outlines a new framework for gauging the properties of quasi-experimental estimates of the Willingness To Pay (WTP) for changes in environmental and other non-market amenities. As a rule, quasi-experimental methods cannot offer alternative hypotheses to judge the quality of their quasi random assignments of treatment and control outcomes...

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  • White Papers // May 2009

    Marry For What: Caste And Mate Selection In Modern India

    This paper studies the role played by caste, education and other social and economic attributes in arranged marriages among middle-class Indians. The authors use a unique data set on individuals who placed matrimonial advertisements in a major newspaper, the responses they received, how they ranked them, and the eventual matches....

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  • White Papers // May 2009

    Sex And Science: How Professor Gender Perpetuates The Gender Gap

    Why aren't there more women in science? Female college students are currently 37 percent less likely than males to obtain a bachelor's degree in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM), and comprise only 25 percent of the STEM workforce. This paper begins to shed light on this issue by exploiting...

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  • White Papers // May 2009

    Patterns Of International Capital Raisings

    This paper documents several new patterns associated with firms issuing stocks and bonds in foreign markets that motivate the need for and help guide the direction of future research. A large and growing fraction of capital raisings, especially debt issuances, occurs in international markets, but a very small number of...

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  • White Papers // May 2009

    Comparative Advantage, Complexity And Volatility

    Less developed countries tend to experience higher output volatility, a fact that is, in part, explained by their specialization in more volatile sectors. This paper proposes theoretical explanations for this pattern of specialization - with the complexity of the goods playing a central role. Specifically, less developed countries with low...

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  • White Papers // May 2009

    Is The Eitc Equivalent To An Nit? Conditional Cash Transfers And Tax Incidence

    The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) is intended to encourage work. But EITC-induced increases in labor supply may drive wages down, shifting the intended transfer toward employers. The author simulates the economic incidence of the EITC under a range of plausible supply and demand elasticity's. In all of the scenarios...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Watch What I Do, Not What I Say: The Unintended Consequences Of The Homeland Investment Act

    This paper analyzes the impact on firm behavior of the Homeland Investment Act of 2004, which provided a one-time tax holiday for the repatriation of foreign earnings by U.S. multinationals. The analysis controls for endogeneity and omitted variable bias by using instruments that identify the firms likely to receive the...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Inflation And The Stock Market: Understanding The "Fed Model"

    The Fed model postulates that the dividend or earnings yield on stocks should equal the yield on nominal Treasury bonds, or at least that the two should be highly correlated. In US data, there is indeed a strikingly high time series correlation between the yield on nominal bonds and the...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Computing DSGE Models With Recursive Preferences

    This paper compares different solution methods for computing the equilibrium of Dynamic Stochastic General Equilibrium (DSGE) models with recursive preferences such as those in Epstein and Zin (1989 and 1991). Models with these preferences have recently become popular, but the authors know little about the best ways to implement them...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Comparative Advantage And Unemployment

    The authors model unemployment allowing workers to differ by comparative advantage in market work. Workers with comparative advantage are identified by who works more hours when employed. This enables to test the model by grouping workers based on their long-term wages and hours from panel data. The model captures the...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Energy Efficiency Economics And Policy

    Energy efficiency and conservation are considered key means for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and achieving other energy policy goals, but associated market behavior and policy responses have engendered debates in the economic literature. The authors review economic concepts underlying consumer decision making in energy efficiency and conservation and examine related...

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  • White Papers // Oct 2010

    Endogenous Cost-effectiveness Analysis In Health Care Technology Adoption

    Increased health care spending has been argued to be largely due to technological change. Cost-effectiveness analysis is the main tool used by private and public third-party payers to prioritize adoption of the new technologies responsible for this growth. However, such analysis by payers invariably reflects prices set by producers rather...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Wage Dispersion In The Search And Matching Model With Intra-firm Bargaining

    Matched employer-employee data exhibits both wage and productivity dispersion across firms and suggest that a linear relationship holds between the average wage paid and a firm productivity. The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate that these facts can be explained by a search and matching model when firms are...

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  • White Papers // Mar 2010

    What Lies Beneath The Euro's Effect On Financial Integration: Currency Risk, Legal Harmonization, Or Trade?

    Although recent research shows that the euro has spurred cross-border financial integration, the exact mechanisms remain unknown. The authors investigate the underlying channels of the euro's effect on financial integration using data on bilateral banking linkages among twenty industrial countries in the past thirty years. They also construct a dataset...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Why Do Skilled Immigrants Struggle In The Labor Market? A Field Experiment With Six Thousand Resumes

    Thousands of resumes were sent in response to online job postings across multiple occupations in Toronto to investigate why Canadian immigrants, allowed in based on skill, struggle in the labor market. Resumes were constructed to plausibly represent recent immigrants under the point system from the three largest countries of origin...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Is Investor Rationality Time Varying? Evidence From The Mutual Fund Industry

    The authors provide new empirical evidence suggesting that the marginal investor in mutual funds behaves differently across market conditions. If the marginal investor allocates capital across mutual funds rationally, then the relative performance of funds should be unpredictable. They find however that relative fund performance is predictable after periods of...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Physical Activity: Economic And Policy Factors

    While much research has focused on the costs of obesity and economic factors that drive obesity growth, little economic research has examined the factors that contribute to obesity - physical inactivity and poor nutrition. This paper will examine correlates and predictors of physical activity over time with emphasis on economic...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Amplification Mechanisms In Liquidity Crises

    The author describes two amplifications mechanisms that operate during liquidity crises and discuss the scope for central bank policies during crises as well as preventive policies in advance of crises. The first mechanism works through asset prices and balance sheets. A negative shock to the balance sheets of asset-holders causes...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Why Do Mothers Breastfeed Girls Less Than Boys? Evidence And Implications For Child Health In India

    Medical research indicates that breastfeeding suppresses post-natal fertility. The authors model the implications for breastfeeding decisions and test the model's predictions using survey data from India. First, they find that breastfeeding increases with birth order, since mothers near or beyond their desired total fertility are more likely to make use...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Never Waste A Good Crisis: An Historical Perspective On Comparative Corporate Governance

    Different economies at different times use different institutional arrangements to constrain the people entrusted with allocating the economy's capital and other resources. Comparative financial histories show these corporate governance regimes to be largely stable through time, but capable of occasional dramatic change in response to a severe crisis. Legal origin,...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Can A Focus On Breakthrough Technologies Improve The Performance Of International Environmental Agreements?

    In a recent paper, Barrett (2006) reaches the conclusion that in general the answer to the question in the title is no. The authors show in this paper that a focus on the R&D phase in the development of breakthrough technologies changes the picture. The stability of international treaties improves...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Firm Heterogeneity And The Long-run Effects Of Dividend Tax Reform

    To study the long-run effect of dividend taxation on aggregate capital accumulation, the authors build a dynamic general equilibrium model in which there is a continuum of firms subject to idiosyncratic productivity shocks. They find that a dividend tax cut raises aggregate productivity by reducing the frictions in the reallocation...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    The Credit Rating Crisis

    Since June 2007, the creditworthiness of structured finance products has deteriorated rapidly. The number of downgrades in November 2007 alone exceeded 2,000 and many downgrades were severe, with 500 tranches downgraded more than 10 notches. Massive downgrades continued in 2008. More than 11,000 of the downgrades affected securities that were...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Economic Contextual Factors And Child Body Mass Index

    This paper examines the relationship between child weight and fast food and fruit and vegetable prices and the availability of fast food restaurants, full-service restaurants, supermarkets, grocery stores and convenience stores. The authors estimate cross-sectional and individual-level Fixed Effects (FE) models to account for unobserved individual-level heterogeneity. Data are drawn...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Pricing Model Performance And The Two-pass Cross-sectional Regression Methodology

    Statistical inference with this method is typically conducted under the assumption that the models are correctly specified, i.e., expected returns are exactly linear in asset betas. This can be a problem in practice since all models are, at best, approximations of reality and are likely to be subject to a...

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  • White Papers // Jun 2009

    Trade, Offshoring, And The Invisible Handshake

    The authors study the effect of globalization on the volatility of wages and worker welfare in a model in which risk is allocated through long-run employment relationships (the 'Invisible handshake'). Globalization can take two forms: International integration of commodity markets (i.e., free trade) and international integration of factor markets (i.e.,...

    Provided By National Bureau of Economic Research