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We propose uncertainty shocks as a new shock that drives business cycles. First, we demonstrate that microeconomic uncertainty is robustly countercyclical, rising sharply during recessions, particularly during the Great Recession of 2007-2009. Second, we quantify the impact of time-varying uncertainty on the economy in a dynamic stochastic general(More)
Yes. This paper shows that, since the late 1980s, U.S. financial markets and private sector forecasters have become (1) better able to forecast the federal funds rate at horizons out to several months, (2) less surprised by Federal Reserve announcements, (3) more certain of their interest rate forecasts ex ante, as measured by interest rate options, and (4)(More)
We investigate the effects of U.S. monetary policy on asset prices using a high-frequency event-study analysis. We test whether these effects are adequately captured by a single factor—changes in the federal funds rate target—and find that they are not. Instead, we find that two factors are required. These factors have a structural interpretation as a "(More)
We present an algorithm and software routines for computing nth-order Taylor series approximate solutions to dynamic, discrete-time rational expectations models around a nonstochastic steady state. The primary advantage of higher-order (as opposed to first-or second-order) approximations is that they are valid not just locally, but often globally (i.e.,(More)
This paper presents preliminary fi ndings and is being distributed to economists and other interested readers solely to stimulate discussion and elicit comments. The views expressed in this paper are those of the authors and are not necessarily refl ective of views at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York or the Federal Reserve System. Any errors or(More)
A number of recent articles have used different financial market instruments to measure near-term expectations of the federal funds rate and the high-frequency changes in these instruments around Federal Open Market Committee announcements to measure monetary policy shocks. This article evaluates the empirical success of a variety of financial market(More)
Using the prices of federal funds futures contracts, we measure the impact of the surprise component of Federal Reserve policy decisions on the expected future trajectory of interest rates. We show how this information can be used to identify the effects of a monetary policy shock in a standard VAR. This alternative approach to identification is quite(More)
What ended the Great Depression in the United States? This paper suggests that the recovery was driven by a shift in expectations. This shift was triggered by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt's (FDR) policy actions. On the monetary policy side, Roosevelt abolished the gold standard and announced an explicit policy objective of inflating the price level(More)
The household's labor margin has a substantial effect on risk aversion, and hence asset prices, in dynamic equilibrium models even when utility is addi-tively separable between consumption and labor. This paper derives simple, closed-form expressions for risk aversion that take into account the house-hold's labor margin. Ignoring this margin can wildly(More)