Choongryul Yang

Department of Economics
University of Texas at Austin
2225 Speedway C3100
Austin, TX 78712
c.yang@utexas.edu

I am a Ph.D. candidate in economics at the University of Texas at Austin.

My research focuses on macroeconomic topics, including monetary and fiscal policy, expectations formation, and business cycle fluctuations.

I am currently on the job market and will be available for interviews at the 2019 EEA Job Market in Rotterdam and the 2020 ASSA Annual Meetings in San Diego.

For more information please see my CV or contact me at: c.yang@utexas.edu

Job Market Paper

This version: 2019/11. [Draft].

Abstract

How does the number of products sold by a firm affect its decisions regarding price setting and information acquisition? Using a firm-level survey from New Zealand, I show that firms that produce more goods have both better information about aggregate inflation and more frequent but smaller price changes. To characterize the implications of these empirical findings for the ability of monetary policy to stimulate the economy, I develop a new dynamic general equilibrium model with rationally inattentive multi-product firms that pay a menu cost to reset their prices. I show that the interaction of the menu cost and rational inattention frictions leads firms to adopt a wait-and-see policy and gives rise to a new selection effect: firms have time-varying inaction bands widened by their subjective uncertainty about the economy such that price adjusters choose to be better informed than non-adjusters. This selection effect endogenously generates a distribution of desired price changes with a majority near zero and some very far from zero, which acts as a strong force to amplify monetary non-neutrality. I calibrate the model to be consistent with the micro-evidence on both prices and inattention and find two main quantitative results. First, the new selection effect, coupled with imperfect information of price setters, leads to real effects of monetary policy shocks in the one-good version of the model that are nearly as large as those in the Calvo model. Second, in the two-good version of the model, as firms optimally choose to have better information about monetary shocks, the real effects of monetary policy shocks decline by 20%.

Working Papers

Joint work with Hassan Afrouzi

[Matlab Solver for Dynamic Multidimensional Rational Inattention Models]

This version: 2019/10. [Draft].

We develop a tractable and portable method for characterizing the solution to dynamic multivariate rational inattention models in linear quadratic Gaussian settings. We apply our framework to propose an attention driven theory of the Phillips curve, the slope of which is endogenous to how monetary policy is conducted. We show that the Phillips curve is flatter when the monetary policy is more hawkish: rationally inattentive firms find it optimal to ignore monetary policy shocks when the monetary authority commits to stabilize nominal variables. Moreover, we show that an unexpectedly more dovish monetary policy leads to a completely flat Phillips curve in the short-run and a steeper Phillips curve in the long-run.

Joint work with Saroj Bhattarai and Felipe Schwartzman

FRB-Richmond Working Paper 19-07

This version: 2019/03. [Draft].

We show that the housing wealth collapse of 2006-09 had a persistent impact on employment across counties in the U.S. In particular, localities that had a larger loss in housing net-worth during that period had more depressed employment as late as 2016, without a commensurate population response. The use of IVs and controls to identify the causal impact of the wealth shock amplifies those results, leading to an estimate that a 10 percent change in housing net worth between 2006 and 2009 causes a 4.5 percent decline in local employment by 2016, as compared with a 2006 baseline. We do not find a long-term causal impact of the shock on wages. Sectoral results indicate, however, that the results are unlikely to be purely a result of persistently low demand, since, contrary to the short-run effects, the effect over the longer horizon is less concentrated in the non-tradeables sectors and is instead more prominent in the high-skilled services sector.

Joint work with Saroj Bhattarai, Jae Won Lee, and Woong Yong Park

CESifo Working Paper No. 7630

This version: 2019/04. [Draft].

We study aggregate, distributional, and welfare effects of a permanent reduction in the capital tax rate in a dynamic equilibrium model with capital-skill complementarity. Such a tax reform leads to expansionary long-run aggregate effects but is coupled with an increase in the skill premium. Moreover, the expansionary long-run aggregate effects are smaller when distortionary labor or consumption tax rates have to increase to finance the capital tax rate cut. An extension to a model with heterogeneous households shows that consumption inequality increases in the long-run. We study transition dynamics and show that short-run effects depend critically on the monetary policy response: whether the central bank allows inflation to directly facilitate government debt stabilization and how inertially it raises interest rates. Finally, we contrast the long-term aggregate welfare gains with short-term losses and show that welfare gains for the skilled go together with welfare losses for the unskilled.

Work in Progress

Teaching Experience

University of Texas at Austin
Macroeconomic Theory, TA for Professor Olivier Coibion Fall 2019
Macroeconomics I (Ph.D. Course), TA for Professor Andrew Glover [TA Evaluation] Fall 2018
Macroeconomics II (Ph.D. Course), TA for Professor Saroj Bhattarai [TA Evaluation] Spring 2018–19
Economic Statistics, TA for Professor Valerie Bencivenga Fall 2017
Macroeconomic Theory, TA for Professor Andrea Civelli Spring 2017
Introduction to Econometrics, TA for Professor Steve Trejo Fall 2016
Introduction to Macroeconomics, TA for Professor Shalah Mostashari Spring 2015–16
Microeconomics (Master Course), TA for Professor Stephanie Houghton Fall 2015
Introduction to Microeconomics, TA for Professor Wayne R Hickenbottom Fall 2014
Sogang University
Intermediate Macroeconomics, TA for Professor Yoonsoo Lee Fall 2011–12
Principles of Economics, TA for Professor Yoonsoo Lee Spring 2011–12