Found 20 article(s) for author 'James Stock'

Climate Change, Climate Policy, and Economic Growth

Climate Change, Climate Policy, and Economic Growth. James Stock, July 1, 2019, Paper, “The topics of climate change and climate change policy encompass a complex mixture of the natural sciences, economics, and a mass of institutional, legal, and technical details. This complexity and multidisciplinary nature make it difficult for thoughtful citizens to reach their own conclusions on the topic and for potentially interested economists to know where to start. This essay aims to provide a point of entry for macroeconomists interested in climate change and climate change policy but with no special knowledge of the field. I therefore start at the beginning, with some basic background on climate change, presented through the eyes of an econometrician. I then turn to climate policy in the United States. That discussion points to a large number of researchable open questions which macroeconomists are particularly well-suited to tackle.Link

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The Federal Reserve’s Current Framework for Monetary Policy:  A Review and Assessment 

The Federal Reserve’s Current Framework for Monetary Policy: A Review and Assessment. James Stock, May 24, 2019, Paper, “The Humphrey-Hawkins Act of 1978 instructs the Federal Reserve Board to “promote effectively the goals of maximum employment, stable prices, and moderate long‐term interest rates.” The methods by which this dual mandate of maximum employment and price stability is to be accomplished are left to the Fed. Those methods have evolved over time as the Fed and economists learned more about the theory and practice of monetary policy (Fuhrer et. al. (2018)).Link

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Trend, Seasonal, and Sectoral Inflation in the Euro Area

Trend, Seasonal, and Sectoral Inflation in the Euro Area. James Stock, January 27, 2019, Paper, “An unobserved components model with stochastic volatility is used to decompose aggregate Euro area HICP inflation into a trend, seasonal and irregular components. Estimates of the components based only on aggregate data are imprecise: the width of 68% error bands for the seasonally adjusted value of aggregate inflation is 1.0 percentage points in the final quarter of the sample. Estimates are more precise using a multivariate model for a 13-sector decomposition of aggregate inflation, which yields a corresponding error band that is roughly 40% narrower. Trend inflation exhibited substantial variability during the 2001-2018 period and this variability closely mirrored variation in real activity.Link

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The business cycle is alive and well

The business cycle is alive and well. James Stock, January 3, 2019, Paper, “Have the dynamic relations among macro variables changed markedly since the financial crisis? A dynamic factor model provides consistent evidence of stability across 248 variables The Great Moderation appears to be ongoing; you cannot reject the hypothesis that the standard deviation of four-quarter GDP growth is the same over 1984–2007 and over 2008–2018. Even so, the apparent slower GDP growth trend implies a substantial probability that a recession may start in the next 2 years, even not adding the risk that some large unprecedented negative event may occur. Because of low interest rates and already-large deficits, the ability of Congress and the Fed to mitigate the effects of a recession are historically constrained.Link

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The Price of Biodiesel RINs and Economic Fundamentals

The Price of Biodiesel RINs and Economic Fundamentals. James Stock, December 2018, Paper, “The D4 RIN is the tradable compliance certificate for the biomass-based diesel mandate in the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). Understanding the price dynamics of the D4 RIN is important for understanding the RFS because its price sets a ceiling on the ethanol RIN (D6) and because some observers have suggested that RIN price fluctuations are too large to be explained by economic theory. We use option pricing theory to develop a model of the D4 RIN in terms of its economic fundamentals: the spread between the prices of biodiesel and petroleum diesel and the status of the biodiesel blenders’ tax credit. The resulting D4 fundamental price closely tracks actual D4 prices. We conclude that RIN price volatility arises because of the design of the RFS and intrinsic features of the US fuel supply system.Link

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The Cost of Reducing Greenhouse Gas Emissions

The Cost of Reducing Greenhouse Gas Emissions, James Stock, August 2, 2018, Paper, “This paper reviews the cost of various interventions that reduce greenhouse gas emissions. As much as possible we focus on actual abatement costs (dollars per ton of carbon dioxide avoided), as measured by 50 economic studies of programs over the past decade, supplemented by our own calculations. We distinguish between static costs, which occur over the lifetime of the project, and dynamic costs, which incorporate spillovers. Interventions or policies that are expensive in a static sense can be inexpensive in a dynamic sense if they induce innovation and learning-by-doing.Link

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Reforming the Renewable Fuel Standard

Reforming the Renewable Fuel Standard. James Stock, February 2018, Paper, “The Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) was established by the Energy Policy Act of 2005 and was substantially expanded as part of the Energy Security and Independence Act (EISA) of 2007. The goals of the program, and of US biofuels policy more broadly, are threefold: to enhance energy security through additional domestic production of biofuels, to support rural economies, and to promote second-generation transportation fuels with low life cycle greenhouse gas footprints.Link

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The Slow Recovery in Output after 2009

The Slow Recovery in Output after 2009. James Stock, 2017, Paper, “The U.S. economy has been expanding slowly since the recession trough in 2009. Though unemployment has declined at about the same rate as in previous recoveries, output has grown much more slowly than in the past. We explore explanations for the shortfall in output growth, using a quantitative decomposition based on growth economics. Two components of the decomposition stand out: slow growth in productivity, and a growing shortfall of labor-force participation relative to its demographic determinants. The slow growth in both components predated the recession. Our analysis gives a full treatment to cyclical effects.Link

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The Effects of Fuel Prices, Regulations, and Other Factors on U.S. Coal Production, 2008-2016

The Effects of Fuel Prices, Regulations, and Other Factors on U.S. Coal Production, 2008-2016. John Coglianese, James Stock, June 15, 2017, Paper, “As is shown in Figure 1, between 2008 and 2015, U.S. coal production fell from 1,172 million tons to 897 million tons and coal employment fell from 87,000 to 66,000. In 2016, coal production declined further, to 739 million tons, 37% below its 2008 level. It is widely understood that a primary factor in this decline has been the sharp decline in natural gas prices, which has led to the substitution of natural gas for coal in electricity generation. In 2008, the national average price of natural gas delivered to an electricity generator nationally was 4.3times the price of coal, on a Btu basis; by 2016, this relative price had fallen to 1.4 as a result of the development and spread of fracking. This national decline masks regional variation, with natural gas prices being even more competitive in some regions. For the first time, in 2016 electricity generated from gas overtook generation from coal.Link

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