|Born||September 14, 1920|
Omaha, Nebraska, U.S.
|Died||October 20, 2013 93) (aged|
Gladwyne, Pennsylvania, U.S.
|Institution|| University of Pennsylvania |
University of Oxford
University of Michigan
|Field|| Macroeconomics |
|Alma mater|| Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Ph.D.)|
University of California, Berkeley (B.A.)
Los Angeles City College (A.A.)
|Jorge L. Gana|
E. Roy Weintraub
|Contributions||Macroeconometric forecasting models|
|Awards|| John Bates Clark Medal (1959)|
Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences (1980)
|Information at IDEAS / RePEc|
|Part of a series on|
Lawrence Robert Klein (September 14, 1920 – October 20, 2013) was an American economist. For his work in creating computer models to forecast economic trends in the field of econometrics in the Department of Economics at the University of Pennsylvania, he was awarded the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences in 1980 specifically "for the creation of econometric models and their application to the analysis of economic fluctuations and economic policies." Due to his efforts, such models have become widespread among economists. Harvard University professor Martin Feldstein told the Wall Street Journal that Klein "was the first to create the statistical models that embodied Keynesian economics," tools still used by the Federal Reserve Bank and other central banks.
Klein was born in Omaha, Nebraska, the son of Blanche (née Monheit) and Leo Byron Klein.He went on to graduate from Los Angeles City College, where he learned calculus; the University of California, Berkeley, where he began his computer modeling and earned a B.A. in Economics in 1942; he earned his Ph.D. in Economics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 1944, where he was Paul Samuelson's first doctoral student.
Klein then moved to the Cowles Commission for Research in Economics, which was then at the University of Chicago, now the Cowles Foundation. There he built a model of the United States economy to forecast the development of business fluctuations and to study the effects of government economic-political policy. After World War II Klein used his model to correctly predict, against the prevailing expectation, that there would be an economic upturn rather than a depression due to increasing consumer demand from returning servicemen. [ citation needed ]Similarly, he correctly predicted a mild recession at the end of the Korean War.
Klein briefly joined the Communist Party during the 1940s, which led to trouble years later.
At the University of Michigan, Klein developed enhanced macroeconomic models, in particular the famous Klein–Goldberger model with Arthur Goldberger, which was based on foundations laid by Jan Tinbergen of the Netherlands, later winner of the first economics prize in 1969. Klein differed from Tinbergen in using an alternative economic theory and a different statistical technique.
In 1954, Klein's brief membership in the Communist Party was made publicand he was denied tenure at the University of Michigan, in the wake of the McCarthy era. Klein moved to the University of Oxford, and developed an economic model of the United Kingdom known as the Oxford model with Sir James Ball. Additionally, at the Institute of Statistics Klein assisted with the creation of the British Savings Surveys, based upon the Michigan Surveys.
In 1958 Klein returned to the U.S. to join the Department of Economics at the University of Pennsylvania. In 1959 he was awarded the John Bates Clark Medal, one of the two most prestigious awards in the field of economics. In 1968 he became the Benjamin Franklin Professor of Economics and Finance at Penn.
In the early 1960s Klein became the leader of the major "Brookings-SSRC Project" to construct a detailed econometric model to forecast the short-term development of the U.S. economy.
Later in the '60s, Klein constructed the Wharton Econometric Forecasting Model. This model, considerably smaller than the Brookings model, achieved a very good reputation for its analysis of business conditions, used to forecast fluctuations including national product, exports, investments, and consumption, and to study the effect on them of changes in taxation, public expenditure, oil price, etc.
In 1969 Klein founded Wharton Econometric Forecasting Associates or WEFA (now IHS Global Insight), launching the econometric forecasting industry in the United States. Among his clients were General Electric Company, IBM, and Bethlehem Steel Corporation. He was the initiator of, and an active research leader in their LINK project, a consortium of model builders from many countries, which was also mentioned in his Nobel citation. The aim was to produce the world's first global economic model, linking models of many of the world's countries so that the effect of changes in the economy of one country are reflected in the other. LINK, which is now operated by the United Nations, is still meeting regularly, most recently in September 2018 in Santiago, Chile.
Klein served as a thesis advisor for numerous well-known economists including E. Roy Weintraub in the late 1960s.[ citation needed ]
During the 1976 United States presidential election, Klein coordinated Jimmy Carter's economic task force. He declined an invitation to join Carter's administration. Klein has also been president of the Econometric Society. the International Atlantic Economic Society (1989–1990), and the American Economic Association (in 1977).
His Nobel citation concludes that "few, if any, research workers in the empirical field of economic science, have had so many successors and such a large impact as Lawrence Klein". However, Christopher Sims has criticized the assumptions underlying large macro-econometric models built by Klein (Sims, 1980). Also, many economists have questioned the suitability of estimation methods employed by large structural models and the usefulness of simple autoregressive models for approximating economic systems.
In his final years, he was constructing short range "current quarter models" that use current economic indicators to get a handle on the rate of economic growth during the current and next quarter. In contrast to earlier efforts to model the economy structurally and to use constant adjustments and judgmental estimates for the exogenous variables, these systems are deliberately automatic and mechanical, simply translating available information into a statistically best estimate of current conditions. This represents a very different tradition from his earlier model building and applications.
After formal retirement and until his death he was engaged in macro econometric model building high-frequency models that project the economy in a monthly, quarterly frame. A publication on high frequency model containing countries such as US, China, Russia, India, Brazil, Mexico, Korea and Hong Kong was expected in 2008.
Klein was a founding trustee of Economists for Peace and Security.
He died at the age of 93 in his home on October 20, 2013.
Ragnar Anton Kittil Frisch was a Norwegian economist and the co-recipient of the first Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences in 1969. He is known for being one of the founders of the discipline of econometrics, and for coining the widely used term pair macroeconomics/microeconomics in 1933.
Franco Modigliani was an Italian-American economist and the recipient of the 1985 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics. He was a professor at University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign, Carnegie Mellon University, and MIT Sloan School of Management.
Jan Tinbergen was a Dutch economist who was awarded the first Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences in 1969, which he shared with Ragnar Frisch for having developed and applied dynamic models for the analysis of economic processes. He is widely considered to be one of the most influential economists of the 20th century and one of the founding fathers of econometrics. It has been argued that the development of the first macroeconometric models, the solution of the identification problem, and the understanding of dynamic models are his three most important legacies to econometrics. Tinbergen was a founding trustee of Economists for Peace and Security. In 1945, he founded the Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis (CPB) and was the agency's first director.
Paul Anthony Samuelson was an American economist. The first American to win the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences, the Swedish Royal Academies stated, when awarding the prize in 1970, that he "has done more than any other contemporary economist to raise the level of scientific analysis in economic theory". Economic historian Randall E. Parker has called him the "Father of Modern Economics", and The New York Times considered him to be the "foremost academic economist of the 20th century".
Wharton Econometric Forecasting Associates, Inc was an economics forecasting and consulting organization founded by Nobel Prize winner Lawrence Klein.
Arthur Stanley Goldberger was an econometrician and an economist. He worked with Nobel Prize winner Lawrence Klein on the development of the Klein–Goldberger macroeconomic model at the University of Michigan. He died at the age of 79.
A macroeconomic model is an analytical tool designed to describe the operation of the problems of economy of a country or a region. These models are usually designed to examine the comparative statics and dynamics of aggregate quantities such as the total amount of goods and services produced, total income earned, the level of employment of productive resources, and the level of prices.
Tjalling Charles Koopmans was a Dutch-American mathematician and economist. He was the joint winner with Leonid Kantorovich of the 1975 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences for his work on the theory of the optimum allocation of resources. Koopmans showed that on the basis of certain efficiency criteria, it is possible to make important deductions concerning optimum price systems.
Thomas John Sargent is an American economist and the W.R. Berkley Professor of Economics and Business at New York University. He specializes in the fields of macroeconomics, monetary economics, and time series econometrics. As of 2020, he ranks as the 29th most cited economist in the world. He was awarded the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics in 2011 together with Christopher A. Sims for their "empirical research on cause and effect in the macroeconomy".
Edmund Strother Phelps is an American economist and the recipient of the 2006 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences.
The Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics is an economic research institute at Yale University. It was created as the Cowles Commission for Research in Economics at Colorado Springs in 1932 by businessman and economist Alfred Cowles. In 1939, the Cowles Commission moved to the University of Chicago under Theodore O. Yntema. Jacob Marschak directed it from 1943 until 1948, when Tjalling C. Koopmans assumed leadership. Increasing opposition to the Cowles Commission from the department of economics of the University of Chicago during the 1950s impelled Koopmans to persuade the Cowles family to move the commission to Yale University in 1955 where it became the Cowles Foundation.
Christopher Albert Sims is an American econometrician and macroeconomist. He is currently the John J.F. Sherrerd '52 University Professor of Economics at Princeton University. Together with Thomas Sargent, he won the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences in 2011. The award cited their "empirical research on cause and effect in the macroeconomy".
Leonid "Leo" Hurwicz was a Polish-American economist and mathematician, known for his work in game theory and mechanism design. He originated the concept of incentive compatibility, and showed how desired outcomes can be achieved by using incentive compatible mechanism design. Hurwicz shared the 2007 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences for his seminal work on mechanism design. Hurwicz was one of the oldest Nobel Laureates, having received the prize at the age of 90.
Dynamic stochastic general equilibrium modeling is a macroeconomic method which is often employed by monetary and fiscal authorities for policy analysis, explaining historical time-series data, as well as future forecasting purposes. DSGE econometric modeling applies general equilibrium theory and microeconomic principles in a tractable manner to postulate economic phenomena, such as economic growth and business cycles, as well as policy effects and market shocks.
Macroeconomic theory has its origins in the study of business cycles and monetary theory. In general, early theorists believed monetary factors could not affect real factors such as real output. John Maynard Keynes attacked some of these "classical" theories and produced a general theory that described the whole economy in terms of aggregates rather than individual, microeconomic parts. Attempting to explain unemployment and recessions, he noticed the tendency for people and businesses to hoard cash and avoid investment during a recession. He argued that this invalidated the assumptions of classical economists who thought that markets always clear, leaving no surplus of goods and no willing labor left idle.
Following the development of Keynesian economics, applied economics began developing forecasting models based on economic data including national income and product accounting data. In contrast with typical textbook models, these large-scale macroeconometric models used large amounts of data and based forecasts on past correlations instead of theoretical relations. These models estimated the relations between different macroeconomic variables using regression analysis on time series data. These models grew to include hundreds or thousands of equations describing the evolution of hundreds or thousands of prices and quantities over time, making computers essential for their solution. While the choice of which variables to include in each equation was partly guided by economic theory, variable inclusion was mostly determined on purely empirical grounds. Large-scale macroeconometric model consists of systems of dynamic equations of the economy with the estimation of parameters using time-series data on a quarterly to yearly basis.
Carl Weinberg is an American economist. He is the founder, Chief Economist and managing director of High Frequency Economics, an economic research firm located in Valhalla, NY.
The Klein–Goldberger model was an early macroeconometric model for the United States developed by Lawrence Klein and Arthur Goldberger, Klein's doctoral student at the University of Michigan, in 1955. Grounded in Keynesian macroeconomic theory, it describes the workings of the United States economy in terms of 20 simultaneous equations, using time series data from 1929 to 1952. The Klein–Goldberger model extended the pioneering work of Jan Tinbergen in the 1940s, and paved the way for even larger models such as the Wharton models of the 1960s, or the Brookings model, with almost 400 equations.
Ta-Chung Liu was a Chinese American economist and econometrician. He was a professor of economics at Johns Hopkins University and Cornell University. During his time at Cornell, he mentored Robert F. Engle, an econometrician who later won the Nobel Prize in Economics.
Charles Frederick Roos was an American economist who made contributions to mathematical economics. He was one of the founders of the Econometric Society together with American economist Irving Fisher and Norwegian economist Ragnar Frisch in 1930. He served as Secretary-Treasurer during the first year of the Society and was elected as President in 1948. He was director of research of the Cowles Commission from September 1934 to January 1937.
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