A Note on Business Cycle Accounting

Bäurle, Gregor; Burren, Daniel (October 2007). A Note on Business Cycle Accounting (Discussion Papers 07-05). Bern: Department of Economics

dp0705.pdf - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons: Attribution (CC-BY).

Download (137kB) | Preview

Chari, Kehoe, and McGrattan (2007) (CKM) show that a large class of dynamic stochastic general equilibrium (DSGE) models with various frictions and shocks is observationally equivalent to a benchmark real business cycle (RBC) model with correlated “wedges” in the RBC model’s first-order conditions. The wedges in the static first-order conditions of the RBC model can be readily computed by evaluating the first-order conditions at the data and then solving for the wedges. In contrast, identification of the “investment wedge” in the RBC model’s dynamic Euler equation requires the researcher to make assumptions about the expectation formation by agents in the RBC model. In particular, CKM assume that expectations are formed as if, from the perspective of the model’s agents, wedges followed a vector autoregressive process of order one (VAR(1)). We show that wedges generally do not have a VAR(1) representation, implying that CKM’s procedure is based on
odelinconsistent expectations. We also provide an alternative, model-consistent approach
to modeling expectation formation. On the former issue, we present a necessary and
sufficient “rank condition” under which a detailed economy can be mapped into a benchmark model where wedges follow a VAR(1) process. On the latter issue, we suggest that the information set underlying the expectation formation should not only contain current wedges, but also all predetermined variables.

Item Type:

Working Paper


03 Faculty of Business, Economics and Social Sciences > Department of Economics

UniBE Contributor:

Bäurle, Gregor Stefan and Burren, Daniel


300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology > 330 Economics


Discussion Papers


Department of Economics




Lars Tschannen

Date Deposited:

06 Oct 2020 15:29

Last Modified:

06 Oct 2020 15:29

JEL Classification:

C50, E10





Actions (login required)

Edit item Edit item
Provide Feedback