Staff Report 338

Comment on Gali and Rabanal’s “Technology Shocks and Aggregate Fluctuations: How Well Does the RBC Model Fit Postwar U.S. Data?”

Ellen R. McGrattan | Consultant

Revised December 1, 2004

Gali and Rabanal provide statistical evidence that, in their view, puts into question the real business-cycle paradigm in favor of the sticky-price paradigm. I demonstrate that their statistical procedure is easily misled in that they would reach the same conclusions even if their data had been simulated from an RBC model. I also demonstrate that sticky-price models do a poor job generating U.S.-like business cycles with only shocks to technology, the federal funds rate, and government consumption. This explains why Gali and Rabanal need large unobserved shocks to preferences and to the degree of monopoly power.

Published In: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2004 (Vol. 19, 2005, pp. 289-308)

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