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Keywords:

  • C32;
  • E32;
  • E52
  • business cycles;
  • identification;
  • impulse responses;
  • vector autoregression

We ask how macroeconomic and financial variables respond to empirical measures of shocks to technology, labor supply, and monetary policy. These three shocks account for the preponderance of output, productivity, and price fluctuations. Only technology shocks have a permanent impact on economic activity. Labor inputs have little initial response to technology shocks. Monetary policy has a small response to technology shocks but “leans against the wind” in response to the more cyclical labor supply shock. This shock has the biggest impact on interest rates. Stock prices respond to all three shocks. Other empirical implications of our approach are discussed.