Essays in Honour of Fabio Canova: Volume 44B

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Table of contents

(7 chapters)

The authors propose the information matrix test to assess the constancy of mean and variance parameters in vector autoregressions (VAR). They additively decompose it into several orthogonal components: conditional heteroskedasticity and asymmetry of the innovations, and their unconditional skewness and kurtosis. Their Monte Carlo simulations explore both its finite size properties and its power against i.i.d. coefficients, persistent but stationary ones, and regime switching. Their procedures detect variation in the autoregressive coefficients and residual covariance matrix of a VAR for the US GDP growth rate and the statistical discrepancy, but they fail to detect any covariation between those two sets of coefficients.


In this chapter, the authors ask two questions: (i) Is the conduct of monetary policy stable across time and similar across major economies? and (ii) Do policy decisions of major central banks have international spillover effects? To address these questions, the authors build on recent semi-parametric advances in time-varying parameter models that allow us to increase the vector autoregressive () dimension and to jointly model three advanced economies (USA, UK and the Euro Area). The main reduced-form finding of this chapter is an increased connectedness between and within countries during the recent financial crisis. In order to study policy spillovers, we jointly identify three economy-specific monetary policy shocks using a combination of sign and magnitude restrictions. The authors find that monetary policy shocks were larger in magnitude and more persistent in the early 1980s than in subsequent periods. The authors also uncover positive spillover effects of policy between countries in the 1980s and diminished, and sometimes negative ‘beggar-thy-neighbour’ effects in the second half of the sample. Moreover, during the 1980s, the authors find evidence for policy coordination between the Federal Reserve, the Bank of England and the European Central Bank.


The authors introduce a new approach to estimate high-dimensional factor-augmented vector autoregressive models (FAVAR) where the loadings are subject to idiosyncratic regime-switching dynamics. Our Bayesian estimation method alleviates computational challenges and makes the estimation of high-dimensional FAVAR with heterogeneous regime-switching straightforward to implement. The authors perform extensive simulation experiments to study the finite sample performance of our estimation method, demonstrating its relevance in high-dimensional settings. Next, the authors illustrate the performance of the proposed framework for studying the impact of credit market disruptions on a large set of macroeconomic variables. The results of this study underline the importance of accounting for non-linearities in factor loadings when evaluating the propagation of aggregate shocks.


Recently, star variables and the post-crisis nature of cyclical fluctuations have attracted a great deal of interest. In this chapter, the authors investigate different methods of assessing business cycles (BCs) for the European Union in general and the euro area in particular. First, the authors conduct a Monte Carlo (MC) experiment using a broad spectrum of univariate trend-cycle decomposition methods. The simulation aims to examine the ability of the analysed methods to find the observed simulated cycle with structural properties similar to actual macroeconomic data. For the simulation, the authors used the structural model’s parameters calibrated to the euro area’s real gross domestic product (GDP) and unemployment rate. The simulation outcomes indicate the sufficient composition of the suite of models (SoM) consisting of popular Hodrick–Prescott, Christiano–Fitzgerald and structural trend-cycle-seasonal filters, then used for the real application. The authors find that: (i) there is a high level of model uncertainty in comparing the estimates; (ii) growth rate (acceleration) cycles have often the worst performances, but they could be useful as early-warning predictors of turning points in growth and BCs; and (iii) the best-performing MC approaches provide a reasonable combination as the SoM. When swings last less time and/or are smaller, it is easier to pick a good alternative method to the suite to capture the BC for real GDP. Second, the authors estimate the BCs for real GDP and unemployment data varying from 1995Q1 to 2020Q4 (GDP) or 2020Q3 (unemployment), ending up with 28 cycles per country. This analysis also confirms that the BCs of euro area members are quite synchronized with the aggregate euro area. Some major differences can be found, however, especially in the case of periphery and new member states, with the latter improving in terms of coherency after the global financial crisis. The German cycles are among the cyclical movements least synchronized with the aggregate euro area.


Long-term interest rates of small open economies (SOE) correlate strongly with the USA long-term rate. Can central banks in those countries decouple from the United States? An estimated Dynamic Stochastic General Equilibrium (DSGE) model for the UK (vis-á-vis the USA) establishes three structural empirical results: (1) Comovement arises due to nominal fluctuations, not through real rates or term premia; (2) the cause of comovement is the central bank of the SOE accommodating foreign inflation trends, rather than systematically curbing them; and (3) SOE may find themselves much more affected by changes in USA inflation trends than the United States itself. All three results are shown to be intuitive and backed by off-model evidence.

Cover of Essays in Honour of Fabio Canova
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Advances in Econometrics
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Emerald Publishing Limited
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