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Elena Bobeica

Economics

Division

Prices & Costs

Current Position

Senior Economist

Fields of interest

Other Special Topics

Email

Elena.Bobeica@ecb.int

7 April 2015
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 1777
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Abstract
The paper investigates the link between domestic demand pressure and exports by considering an error correction dynamic panel model for eleven euro area countries over the last two decades. The results suggest that there is a statistically significant substitution effect between domestic and foreign sales. Furthermore, this relationship appears to be asymmetric, as the link is much stronger when domestic demand falls than when it increases. Weakness in the domestic market translates into increased efforts to serve markets abroad, but, conversely, during times of boom, exports are not negatively affected by increasing domestic sales. This reorientation towards foreign markets was particularly important during the crisis period, and thus could represent a new adjustment channel to strong negative domestic shocks. The results have important policy implications, as this substitution effect between domestic and external markets might allow the euro area countries under stress to improve their trade outcomes with a relatively small downward pressure on domestic prices.
JEL Code
C22 : Mathematical and Quantitative Methods→Single Equation Models, Single Variables→Time-Series Models, Dynamic Quantile Regressions, Dynamic Treatment Effect Models &bull Diffusion Processes
C50 : Mathematical and Quantitative Methods→Econometric Modeling→General
F10 : International Economics→Trade→General
Network
Competitiveness Research Network
15 July 2015
OCCASIONAL PAPER SERIES - No. 163
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Abstract
This Compendium describes the contribution of CompNet to the improvement of the analytical framework and indicators of competitiveness. It does this by presenting a comprehensive database of novel competitiveness indicators. These are more than 80 novel indicators designed by CompNet members that capture macro, micro and cross-country dimensions, thus providing a comprehensive view of the competitive position of EU countries and their peers. A short description of each innovative indicator
JEL Code
F14 : International Economics→Trade→Empirical Studies of Trade
F41 : International Economics→Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance→Open Economy Macroeconomics
F60 : International Economics→Economic Impacts of Globalization→General
D24 : Microeconomics→Production and Organizations→Production, Cost, Capital, Capital, Total Factor, and Multifactor Productivity, Capacity
E31 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Price Level, Inflation, Deflation
15 July 2016
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 1941
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Abstract
This paper studies the importance of price and cost competitiveness for intra- and extra-euro area trade flows of euro area countries. A standard error correction framework shows that price competitiveness is a relatively more important driver of trade flows outside the euro area as compared to those within the monetary union, especially for exports, that tend to be more sensitive to relative prices than imports. We consider various measures of competitiveness and conclude that it is difficult to single out one that outperforms the others; based on an encompassing test, measures based on labour costs appear to contain relatively more information for trade flows, particularly for exports outside the euro area. The key policy implication is that to adjust competitiveness disequilibria within the monetary union, measures besides those aimed at price and cost adjustments should be pursued in the deficit countries, such as structural policies fostering non-price competitiveness.
JEL Code
F14 : International Economics→Trade→Empirical Studies of Trade
F15 : International Economics→Trade→Economic Integration
F41 : International Economics→Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance→Open Economy Macroeconomics
Network
Competitiveness Research Network
25 January 2017
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 2006
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Abstract
Most euro area countries have entered an unprecedented ageing process: life expectancy continues to rise and fertility rates have declined, while retirement age in the last twenty to thirty years hardly increased. This implies an ever smaller fraction of the working age population in total population, leading to changes in consumption and saving behaviours and having an important impact on the macroeconomy. In this paper we focus on the relationship between demographic change and inflation. We find that based on a cointegrated VAR model there is a positive long-run relationship between inflation and the growth rate of working-age population as a share in total population in the euro area countries as a whole, but also in the US and Germany. We also find that this relation is mitigated by the effect of monetary policy, which we account for by including the short-term interest rate in our analysis. One caveat of the analysis could be that the empirical relationship as found does not sufficiently take into account changes in policy settings following the high inflation experiences in the 1970s. Our findings support the view that demographic trends are among the forces that shape the economic environment in which monetary policy operates. This is particularly relevant for countries, like many in Europe, that face an ageing process.
JEL Code
E31 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Price Level, Inflation, Deflation
J11 : Labor and Demographic Economics→Demographic Economics→Demographic Trends, Macroeconomic Effects, and Forecasts
C22 : Mathematical and Quantitative Methods→Single Equation Models, Single Variables→Time-Series Models, Dynamic Quantile Regressions, Dynamic Treatment Effect Models &bull Diffusion Processes
Network
Task force on low inflation (LIFT)
25 January 2017
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 2000
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Abstract
In the immediate wake of the Great Recession we didn't see the disinflation that most models predicted and, subsequently, we didn't see the inflation they predicted. We show that these puzzles disappear in a Vector Autoregressive model that properly accounts for domestic and global factors. Such a model reveals, among others, that domestic factors explain much of the inflation dynamics in the 2012-2014 euro area missing inflation episode. Consequently, economists and models that excessively focused on the global nature of inflation were liable to miss the contribution of deflationary domestic shocks during this episode.
JEL Code
E31 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Price Level, Inflation, Deflation
E32 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Business Fluctuations, Cycles
F44 : International Economics→Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance→International Business Cycles
Network
Task force on low inflation (LIFT)
26 January 2017
RESEARCH BULLETIN - No. 30
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Abstract
Recent inflation “puzzles” disappear in a model that properly accounts for domestic and global factors and captures their changing importance over time. While global factors are often important, domestic factors explain much of the inflation dynamics in the recent missing inflation episode in the euro area.
JEL Code
E31 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Price Level, Inflation, Deflation
E32 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Business Fluctuations, Cycles
F44 : International Economics→Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance→International Business Cycles
31 July 2017
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 2090
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Abstract
What drives external performance of countries? This is a recurring question in academia and policy. The factors underlying export growth are receiving great attention, as countries struggle to grow out of the crisis by increasing exports and as protectionist discourses take foot again. Despite decades of debates, it is still unclear what the drivers of external performance are and, importantly, which ones policy makers can influence. We use Bayesian Model Averaging in a panel setting to investigate the drivers of export market shares of 25 EU countries, considering a wide range of traditional indicators along with novel ones developed within the CompNet Competitiveness Research Network. We find that export market share growth is linked to different factors in the old and in the new Member States, with one exception: for both groups, competitive pressures from China have strongly affected export performance since the early 2000s. In the case of old EU Member States, investment, quality of institutions and available liquidity to firms also appear to play a role. For the new EU Member States, labour and total factor productivity are particularly important, while inward FDI matters rather than domestic investment. Price competitiveness does not seem to play a very important role in either set of countries: relative export prices do show correlation with export performance for the new Member States, but only when they are adjusted for quality. Our results point to the importance of considering the “exporting stage” of a country when discussing export-enhancing policies.
JEL Code
C23 : Mathematical and Quantitative Methods→Single Equation Models, Single Variables→Panel Data Models, Spatio-temporal Models
C51 : Mathematical and Quantitative Methods→Econometric Modeling→Model Construction and Estimation
C55 : Mathematical and Quantitative Methods→Econometric Modeling→Modeling with Large Data Sets?
F14 : International Economics→Trade→Empirical Studies of Trade
O52 : Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth→Economywide Country Studies→Europe
Network
Competitiveness Research Network
4 February 2019
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 2235
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Abstract
This paper documents, for the first time in a systematic manner, the link between labor cost and price inflation in the euro area. Using country and sector quarterly data over the period 1985Q1-2018Q1 we find a strong link between labor cost and price inflation in the four major economies of the euro area and across the three main sectors. The dynamic interaction between prices and wages is time-varying and depends on the state of the economy and on the shocks hitting the economy. Our results show that it is more likely that labor costs are passed on to price inflation with demand shocks than with supply shocks. However, the pass-through is systematically lower in periods of low inflation as compared to periods of high inflation. These results confirm that, under circumstances of predominantly demand shocks, labor cost increases will be passed on to prices. Coming from a period of low inflation, however, this pass-through could be moderate at least until inflation stably reaches a sustained path.
JEL Code
C32 : Mathematical and Quantitative Methods→Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models, Multiple Variables→Time-Series Models, Dynamic Quantile Regressions, Dynamic Treatment Effect Models, Diffusion Processes
E24 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Consumption, Saving, Production, Investment, Labor Markets, and Informal Economy→Employment, Unemployment, Wages, Intergenerational Income Distribution, Aggregate Human Capital
E31 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Price Level, Inflation, Deflation
17 June 2019
ECONOMIC BULLETIN - ARTICLE
Economic Bulletin Issue 4, 2019
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Abstract
In this article we review the evolution of euro area HICP inflation excluding energy and food since the Great Financial Crisis through the lens of the Phillips curve. This period is particularly interesting, as the euro area experienced two recessions (in 2008-2009 and 2011-2014) and a protracted episode of low inflation from 2013 onwards. We estimate a large set of Phillips curve models for the euro area and review the interpretation of inflation developments that they provide over time. We highlight both the advantages and some of the limitations of this type of analysis. We find that our models can account for much of the weakness in underlying inflation between 2013 and mid-2017, but that they cannot account for the most recent weakness in underlying inflation.
JEL Code
E31 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Price Level, Inflation, Deflation
E58 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Central Banks and Their Policies
3 September 2019
OCCASIONAL PAPER SERIES - No. 232
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Abstract
Despite notable improvements in the labour market since 2013, wage growth in the euro area was subdued and substantially overpredicted in 2013-17. This paper summarises the findings of an ESCB expert group on the reasons for low wage growth and provides comparable analyses on wage developments in the euro area as a whole and in individual EU countries. The paper finds that cyclical drivers, as captured by a standard Phillips curve, seem to explain much of the weakness in wage growth during this period, but not all of it. Going beyond the drivers included in standard Phillips curves, other factors are also found to have played a role, such as compositional effects, the possible non-linear reaction of wage growth to cyclical improvements, and structural and institutional factors. In order to increase the robustness of wage forecasts, the paper also proposes ready-to-use tools for cross-checking euro area wage growth forecasts based on wage Phillips curves. These are derived based on a comprehensive real-time forecast evaluation exercise
JEL Code
J30 : Labor and Demographic Economics→Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs→General
E24 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Consumption, Saving, Production, Investment, Labor Markets, and Informal Economy→Employment, Unemployment, Wages, Intergenerational Income Distribution, Aggregate Human Capital
E31 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Price Level, Inflation, Deflation
E32 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Business Fluctuations, Cycles
25 September 2020
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 2471
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Abstract
We find that it does, but choosing the right specification is not trivial. We unveil notable model instability, with breaks in the performance of most simple Phillips curves. Euro area inflation was particularly hard to forecast in the run-up to the EMU and after the sovereign debt crisis, when the trend and for the latter period, also the amount of slack, were harder to pin down. Yet, some specifications outperform a univariate benchmark most of the time and are thus a useful element in a forecaster's toolkit. We base these conclusions on an extensive forecast evaluation over 1994 - 2018, an extraordinarily long period by euro area standards. We complement the analysis using real-time data over 2005-2018. As lessons for practitioners, we find that: (i) the key type of time variation to consider is an inflation trend; (ii) a simple filter-based output gap works well overall as a measure of economic slack, but after the Great Recession it is outperformed by endogenously estimated slack or by estimates from international economic institutions; (iii) external variables do not bring forecast gains; (iv) newer generation Phillips curve models with several time-varying features are a promising avenue for forecasting, especially when density forecasts are of interest, and finally, (v) averaging over a wide range of modelling choices offers some hedge against breaks in forecast performance.
JEL Code
C53 : Mathematical and Quantitative Methods→Econometric Modeling→Forecasting and Prediction Methods, Simulation Methods
E31 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Price Level, Inflation, Deflation
E37 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Forecasting and Simulation: Models and Applications
19 October 2020
STATISTICS PAPER SERIES - No. 38
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Abstract
This paper details the rationale and methodology behind the construction of the Persistent and Common Component of Inflation (PCCI), a measure of underlying inflation in the euro area. The PCCI reflects the view that underlying inflation captures widespread developments across the Harmonised Index of Consumer Prices (HICP) basket and that it is the persistent component of inflation. Methodologically, it relies on a generalised dynamic factor model estimated on a large set of disaggregated HICP inflation rates for 12 euro area countries. For each individual inflation rate, we estimate a low-frequency common component, i.e. a component driven by shocks or factors that are relevant for all inflation series and capturing cycles longer than three years. The PCCI is a weighted average of these common components. It is an alternative to the typical exclusion-based measures used to gauge underlying inflation (e.g. HICP excluding food and energy), as it does not a priori exclude any HICP items. It exhibits a set of desirable properties as a measure of underlying inflation, and it is a good tracker of more lasting inflationary developments (judging by smoothness and bias). Furthermore, it is timely and signals turning points with some lead, while acting as an attractor for headline inflation.
JEL Code
C32 : Mathematical and Quantitative Methods→Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models, Multiple Variables→Time-Series Models, Dynamic Quantile Regressions, Dynamic Treatment Effect Models, Diffusion Processes
E31 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Price Level, Inflation, Deflation
E32 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Business Fluctuations, Cycles
E52 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Monetary Policy
26 May 2021
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 2558
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Abstract
We document the impact of COVID-19 on frequently employed time series models, with a focus on euro area inflation. We show that for both single equation models (Phillips curves) and Vector Autoregressions (VARs) estimated parameters change notably with the pandemic. In a VAR, allowing the errors to have a distribution with fatter tails than the Gaussian one equips the model to better deal with the COVID-19 shock. A standard Gaussian VAR can still be used for producing conditional forecasts when relevant off-model information is used. We illustrate this by conditioning on official projections for a set of variables, but also by tilting to expectations from the Survey of Professional Forecasters. For Phillips curves, averaging across many conditional forecasts in a thick modelling framework offers some hedge against parameter instability.
JEL Code
C53 : Mathematical and Quantitative Methods→Econometric Modeling→Forecasting and Prediction Methods, Simulation Methods
E31 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Price Level, Inflation, Deflation
E37 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Forecasting and Simulation: Models and Applications