Recent Analysis and Research

Posted November 24, 2014
Early Elias, Helen Irvin, and Òscar Jordà

Economic Letter a Publication of Economic Research

An accurate measure of economic slack is key to properly calibrating monetary policy. Two traditional gauges of slack have become harder to interpret since the Great Recession: the gap between output and its potential level, and the deviation of the unemployment rate from its natural rate. As a consequence, conventional policy rules based on these measures of slack generate wide-ranging policy rate recommendations. This variability highlights one of the challenges policymakers currently face.

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Posted November 17, 2014
William A. Branch, Nicolas Petrosky-Nadeau, Guillaume Rocheteau

Working Papers a Publication of Economic Research

We develop a two-sector search-matching model of the labor market with imperfect mobility of workers, augmented to incorporate a housing market and a frictional goods market. Homeowners use home equity as collateral to finance idiosyncratic consumption opportunities. A financial innovation that raises the acceptability of homes as collateral raises house prices and reduces unemployment. It also triggers a reallocation of workers, with the direction of the change depending on firms’ market power in the goods market. A calibrated version of the model under adaptive learning can account for house prices, sectoral labor flows, and unemployment rate changes over 1996-2010.

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The New Geography of Jobs (EiP)

Posted April 30, 2014

The New Geography of Jobs

In the 1950s, the best indicator of a community's economic success was its level of physical capital. In today's world, the best indicator of a community's economic success is human capital. Professor Enrico Moretti discusses the factors shaping community development and the pivotal role of college-educated workers.

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