Discussion Paper

No. 2009-12 | January 22, 2009
Heterogeneous Parameter Uncertainty and the Timing of Investment during Crisis


We present a model in which investors observe the same macroeconomic data but have varying levels of information about the parameters that determine the distribution of the expected returns on investment. During a crisis that increases macroeconomic uncertainty and reduces asset prices, the threshold required return that triggers investment is lower for an informed investor than for an uninformed investor. Simulation of the model suggests that when macroeconomic uncertainty is high investment may increase, is mostly by informed investors, and as time goes on is progressively more by investors who were initially relatively uninformed about model parameters. For over 10,000 instances of firm-level FDI data for Korea from 1996 to 2001, regression results are consistent with the hypothesis that disproportionably more FDI is made by more informed investors during a period of high macroeconomic uncertainty.


JEL Classification:

D8, E2, F4


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Cite As

Shawn Ni and Ronald A. Ratti (2009). Heterogeneous Parameter Uncertainty and the Timing of Investment during Crisis. Economics Discussion Papers, No 2009-12, Kiel Institute for the World Economy. http://www.economics-ejournal.org/economics/discussionpapers/2009-12

Comments and Questions

Anonymous - Referee Report 1
October 07, 2009 - 09:26

See attached file

Shawn Ni and Ron Ratti - Reply to Referee Report 1
October 16, 2009 - 09:31

See attached file