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Course Page for ECON 202: Macroeconomic Theory (Fall 2015)

Course Location: 
Campion Hall 200

Office Hours: 
Tuesday, 10:30am to 12:00pm
Please sign up here for office hours!

Brief Description:

This course provides an introduction to the modern theory and practice of macroeconomics. It covers a variety of the central questions in macroeconomics including: What are the determinants of long-run economic growth? Why do economies regularly experience booms and recessions? Why is there unemployment? What determines the value of money in an economy? The course focuses particular attention on how macroeconomic policy (monetary and fiscal) affects outcomes in these dimensions, and on using the tools of the field to evaluate alternative policy responses to current events.

Course Syllabus:
This is the main syllabus.

Problem Sets:

Course Notes:
Notes on topics not fully covered in textbook.

Past Exams:
Past exams give guidance on exam format.  WARNING: Topics covered are not exactly the same each semester. 

Lecture Topics and Readings:
Below is a detailed list of the topics we will cover and the readings associated with each lecture. This listing will be updated according to our progress and I will point out changes in class.

 Date       Topic Readings/Assignments
9/1  Introduction     
 Mankiw: chapter 1
9/3Business Cycles and Financial Crises in the Data

 Mankiw: chapter 2
Production Functions and Aggregate Supply

 Mankiw: chapter 3
9/10Production Functions and Aggregate Supply    

 Course Notes: Section 3
9/15Long-run Growth and the Solow Model

 Mankiw: chapter 8
 Problem Set 1
9/17Long-run Growth and the Solow Model     

 Mankiw: chapter 9
9/22Long-run Growth: the Convergence Hypothesis

 Choukhmane and Jin on VoxEU
9/24 Innovation and Endogenous Growth

 Lars P. Syll blog
9/29 What is Money?

 Mankiw: chapter 4
10/1 Review Day

 Bring your questions!
Problem Set 2
10/6 Midterm I (in class)

10/8 Balance Sheets and the Money Multiplier

 Course notes: Section 5
10/13Money Markets, Inflation, and the Fisher Equation

 Mankiw: chapter 5
10/15 The Velocity Theory of Money 

 Mankiw: pp 293-307
 Friedman, The Role of Monetary Policy
The IS-LM Model (Part 1) 

Problem Set 3
10/22 The IS-LM Model (Part 2) 

 Mankiw: chapter 11
10/27 The IS-LM Model (Part 3) 

 Mankiw: chapter 12
(Economists doing climate science; paper 1, paper 2)
10/29 Monetary Policy, Quantitative easing, and the Zero-Lower Bound
 Course notes: Section 6
11/3Review Day

 Bring your questions! 
 Problem Set 4
11/5 Midterm II (in class)

11/10 Neoclassical Unemployment

 Feldstein, The Private and Social Costs of Unemployment
 Washington Post, A Brief History of US Unemployment
11/12Class Cancelled 
11/17Frictional Unemployment

 Mankiw: chapter 7
11/19The Optimizing Consumer:
Risk Aversion and Consumption Smoothing 

 Mankiw: chapter 16 
 Course notes
11/24General Equilibrium and the First-Welfare Theorem

 Problem Set 5
 Prescott, Noble Acceptance Essay (Introduction only)
11/26 (Thanksgiving)

12/1The Neo-Classical Model

 Course notes
12/3Applied question chosen by class

 The US in the International Financial System
12/8Review Day

 Bring your questions!

12/10 (no class) Problem Set 6