NBER Working Papers by Cosmin L. Ilut

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Working Papers

June 2014Monetary/Fiscal Policy Mix and Agents' Beliefs
with Francesco Bianchi: w20194
We reinterpret post World War II US economic history using an estimated microfounded model that allows for changes in the monetary/fiscal policy mix. We find that the fiscal authority was the leading authority in the '60s and the '70s. The appointment of Volcker marked a change in the conduct of monetary policy, but inflation dropped only when fiscal policy accommodated this change two years later. In fact, a disinflationary attempt of the monetary authority leads to more inflation if not supported by the fiscal authority. If the monetary authority had always been the leading authority or if agents had been confident about the switch, the Great Inflation would not have occurred and debt would have been higher. This is because the rise in trend inflation and the decline in debt of the '70s ...
May 2014Uncertainty Shocks, Asset Supply and Pricing over the Business Cycle
with Francesco Bianchi, Martin Schneider: w20081
This paper studies a DSGE model with endogenous financial asset supply and ambiguity averse investors. An increase in uncertainty about profits leads firms to substitute away from debt and reduce shareholder payout in bad times when the equity premium is high. Regime shifts in volatility generate large low frequency movements in asset prices due to uncertainty premia that are disconnected from the business cycle.
March 2012Ambiguous Business Cycles
with Martin Schneider: w17900
This paper considers business cycle models with agents who dislike both risk and ambiguity (Knightian uncertainty). Ambiguity aversion is described by recursive multiple priors preferences that capture agents' lack of confidence in probability assessments. While modeling changes in risk typically requires higher-order approximations, changes in ambiguity in our models work like changes in conditional means. Our models thus allow for uncertainty shocks but can still be solved and estimated using first-order approximations. In our estimated medium-scale DSGE model, a loss of confidence about productivity works like 'unrealized' bad news. Time-varying confidence emerges as a major source of business cycle fluctuations.

\Ambiguous Business Cycles", with Martin Schneider, American Economic Review, forthcoming

September 2010Monetary Policy and Stock Market Booms
with Lawrence Christiano, Roberto Motto, Massimo Rostagno: w16402
Historical data and model simulations support the following conclusion. Inflation is low during stock market booms, so that an interest rate rule that is too narrowly focused on inflation destabilizes asset markets and the broader economy. Adjustments to the interest rate rule can remove this source of welfare-reducing instability. For example, allowing an independent role for credit growth (beyond its role in constructing the inflation forecast) would reduce the volatility of output and asset prices.

Published: Lawrence Christiano & Cosmin Ilut & Roberto Motto & Massimo Rostagno, 2010. "Monetary policy and stock market booms," Proceedings - Economic Policy Symposium - Jackson Hole, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, pages 85-145. citation courtesy of

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