Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis working papers are preliminary materials circulated to stimulate discussion and critial comment.
Metro Business Cycles by Maria A. Arias, Charles S. Gascon, and David E. Rapach
Working Paper 2014-046A posted November 2014
We construct monthly economic-activity indices for 51 U.S. metropolitan statistical areas
for 1990 to 2014. Each index is computed via a dynamic factor model that includes 14
variables measuring various aspects of economic activity in a metro area.
It is a robust finding that technical trading rules applied to foreign exchange markets
have earned substantial excess returns over long periods of time. However, the approach to
risk adjustment has typically been rather cursory, and has tended to focus on the CAPM.
Event studies show that Fed unconventional announcements of forward guidance and large scale
asset purchases had large and desired effects on asset prices but do not tell us how long such
The nature of the business cycle appears to have changed. Prior to the 1990s, recoveries
from recessions were quick and steep; after the past three recessions, however, recoveries were
weak and prolonged.
This paper determines the most appropriate ways to model diffusion and jump features of exchange
rates. Simulations show that intraday periodicity in volatility prevents conventional tests from accurately
identifying the frequency and location of jumps.
This paper uses several methods to study the interrelationship among Divisia monetary aggregates, prices, and income, allowing for nonstationary, nonlinearities, asymmetries, and time-varying relationships among the series.
The Malthusian theory of evolution disregards a pervasive fact about human
societies: they expand through conflict. When this is taken account of the long-run
favors not a large population at the level of subsistence, nor yet institutions that
maximize welfare or per capita output, but rather institutions that maximize free
Factor models have become useful tools for studying international business cycles. Block
factor models [e.g., Kose, Otrok, and Whiteman (2003)] can be especially useful as the zero
restrictions on the loadings of some factors may provide some economic interpretation of the
A large literature studies the information contained in national-level economic
indicators, such as financial and aggregate economic activity variables, for forecasting and
nowcasting U.S. business cycle phases (expansions and recessions.)