Sectoral price rigidity and aggregate dynamics

H. Bouakez, E. Cardia and F. Ruge-Murcia
(European Economic Review 65, 1-180, Lead article, 2014)

This paper studies the business cycle implications of sectoral heterogeneity in price rigidity using a highly disaggregated multi-sector model. The model is estimated by the Simulated Method of Moments using a mix of aggregate and sectoral U.S. data. The frequencies of price changes implied by our estimates are consistent with those reported in micro-based studies. We show that heterogeneity in price rigidity is the primary factor explaining the heterogeneity in the responses of sectoral output and inflation to a monetary policy shock. We also find that ignoring sectoral heterogeneity in price rigidity leads to the mismeasurement of the relative importance of aggregate and sector-specific shocks in aggregate and sectoral fluctuations.