Research profile: My research focuses on finance, macroeconomics and topics at the intersection of these two fields. Much of my work is data-driven and combines standard econometric methods with more novel approaches such as web-scraping and large-scale text analysis. I mostly use these techniques to measure otherwise difficult-to-observe economic concepts, and to gain insights into the causal linkages that explain the observable behavior of individuals and firms. Furthermore, while I construct and analyze much of my data at the micro level, I often interpret the resulting findings in terms of their aggregate implications.

Current Research

News Media and Delegated Information Choice (with Kristoffer Nimark, August 2017) - Updated! -  [online appendix]

News media monitor a large number of events on behalf of their audiences but report only those they consider most newsworthy. Analyzing texts from almost 15,000 US newspaper articles, we document that, while different outlets typically emphasize different topics, major events make coverage more homogenous. We analyze the consequences of this type of editorial behavior in a model with delegated information choice that can match the documented facts. In the model, the degree to which information about a given event is common among agents is endogenous. Agents that take strategic decisions react more strongly to information that is closer to common knowledge. The proposed mechanism also induces correlation between different agents’ actions.

Shortages in Corporate Liquidity During Crises and Normal Times: Evidence From SEC Filings (June 2017) - Updated

During the 2008-2010 financial crisis a large number of firms experienced acute liquidity shortages and adjusted real policies such as their employment and investment decisions. Searching the texts of approximately 900,000 SEC filings from the past twenty years, we document that these reactions were very similar to the ones implemented by firms that face shortages during more normal times. However, what made the crisis unique was that many of the affected firms were large, profitable and difficult to distinguish from the median public company. As a result, many widely-used financial constraint measures lost much of their informational content during the crisis and underestimated the number of affected firms. We discuss the theoretical and empirical implications of our findings and what they say about the nature of the financial crisis.


Quantified Narrative Evidence on the Price-Setting Behavior of Public Companies (September 2017) 
- Updated!

We quantify narrative evidence from archived corporate filings to construct a novel dataset on the price-setting behavior of public companies. Our approach is closely related to that of survey-based studies on price setting, but we collect data from two decades instead one specific point in time. This allows us to investigate variation over time, and to establish that qualitative information provided directly by firms is informative about the aggregate variables macroeconomists are fundamentally interested in. Our results suggest that (i) price setting is highly asymmetric and has a strong state-dependent component, (ii) real rigidities in the form of strategic pricing complementarities are very common, and (iii) an increase in the number of price changes does not necessarily imply a decrease in price rigidity. We discuss our findings and their implications in the context of widely-used price-setting models. 


Using Financial Markets to Estimate the Macro Effects of Monetary Policy: An Impact-Identified FAVAR (Sveriges Riksbank Working Paper 267 , May 2013)

In this paper, I use high-frequency financial market estimates to identify the monetary policy shock in a non-recursive 133 variable FAVAR. All restrictions are imposed exclusively on impact, and only on financial market variables. Using the economy’s underlying factor structure as the link  between its real and financial sides, I find that high-frequency responses contain valuable information about the behavior of lower-frequency macro variables. Even though the proposed identification scheme does not fall back on any of the standard (FA)VAR identifying assumptions, it confirms the classical finding that monetary policy has strong and significant delayed effects on real activity. I also obtain stock market responses that are compatible with the efficient market hypothesis and find that consumer prices react very little to monetary policy.


Publications

Non-Profit Differentials in Crowd-Based Financing: Evidence From 50,000 Campaigns (with Sebastian Pitschner-Finn, Economics Letters, June 2014)

We use data from approximately 50,000 crowdfunding projects to assess the relative funding performance of for-profit and non-profit campaigns. We find that non-profit projects are significantly more likely to reach their minimum funding goals, and that they receive more money from the average funding provider. At the same time, however, they have fewer funding providers and obtain lower total funding amounts. Our analysis shows that these results are driven by a small number of very successful for-profit projects. We argue that the findings are consistent with a simple selection mechanism in which entrepreneurs make the non-profit / for-profit decision based on expected project payoffs.