ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

Articles By Macroeconomics

The Role of Informality in Moderating the Impact of Adverse Macroeconomic Shocks

In the presence of informality, adverse demand shocks have a lower impact on aggregate output and adverse supply shocks have a lower impact on prices as well as output. Both would imply that countries without a substantial informal sector, largely more affluent nations, would be more exposed to higher prices following such shocks. This is consistent with contemporary evidence of stagflation in developed countries. Being the residual sector, the informal sector inevitably moves in the opposite direction to the formal sector during a bad shock episode, cushioning its aggregate effect. We then show that the argument goes through if the firms have to finance their working capital requirements by borrowing
from the market.

Inflation Theory Comes Full Circle

A public interchange among some leading macroeconomists suggests a change in the way inflation is perceived by the profession. It is increasingly being recognised that inflation can be the outcome of a conflict over income, reflected in the continuous attempt by the firms to raise prices and by the workers to raise wages in order to gain a larger share of it. At least some part of the inflation in India can be seen as a conflict over income shares and sketches a theory of inflation suited to its economy. Against this background, the effectiveness of inflation targeting is touched upon—the inflation-control strategy of the Reserve Bank of India—and the necessary steps to curb inflationary pressure in India are pointed out.

Do Machine Learning Techniques Provide Better Macroeconomic Forecasts?

Machine learning techniques are now very common in many spheres, and there is a growing popularity of these approaches in macroeconomic forecasting as well. Are these techniques really useful in the prediction of macroeconomic outcomes? Are they superior in performance compared to their traditional counterparts? We carry out a meta-analysis of the existing literature in order to answer these questions. Our analysis suggests that the answers to most of these questions are nuanced and conditional on a number of factors identified in the study.

Fifteenth Finance Commission Award for 2020–21

The first report of the Fifteenth Finance Commission has allayed many fears that arose after the notification of the terms of reference of the commission. The main report for the period 2021–22 to 2025–26 will have to factor in the devastating impact of COVID-19 on the economy and provide adequate fiscal space to the states for socio-economic response and recovery.