Course descriptions for the summer term 2012


040185 UK Introduction to Macroeconomics

UK, 4 hours per week

Language of instruction: English

Time and location:    Monday 12:00–13:30, Hörsaal 6, BWZ

            Tuesday 12:00–13:30 Hörsaal 9, BWZ

Start: March 5, 2012

Course description: The course offers an introduction to modern macroeconomics. Most of it is based on the textbook by Olivier Blanchard: Macroeconomics (Prentice-Hall) in its fifth edition (older editions can be used, but note that there are some changes in some formulas and in notation between editions; usage of the German edition is discouraged). For an introduction to national accounting, see Dudley Jackson: The New National Accounts (Edward Elgar). In this field, the relevant material for all tests is a set of lecture notes by Ana Ania-Martinez, which will be made available to participants. No special preliminary knowledge is required, but some competence in mathematical methods is certainly useful.

In line with the current study plan does this course contain an inseparable mix of elements of ‘lectures’ and of ‘exercises’. Approximately one fourth of the time should be devoted to repetition and to exercises. It is essential that students participate actively. The final grade is determined from a weighted average of exercises (30%), a written midterm test (30%), and a written final test (40%). You need 50% of the total achievable score to pass the course. In particular, note that a positive midterm test is not a binding constraint. However, you cannot pass without participating in the midterm test. In the ‘exercises’ component, you can score points by regular attendance, by occasional unannounced quizzes, or possibly by occasional written homework assignments. Midterm and final tests will be organized jointly with the parallel groups.


Course contents:

1. National accounts

2. The goods market

3. The financial market

4. The IS-LM model (short-run equilibrium on goods and financial markets)

5. The labor market

6. The AS-AD model (medium-run equilibrium on three markets)

7. Phillips curve, Okun's law

8. The open economy (exchange rates, Mundell-Fleming model)

The course contents correspond roughly to chapters 1-8 and 18-21 of Blanchard’s book. All economic theories and models are illustrated using Austrian and international data.

390018 UK PhD-E: Econometrics of Seasonality

UK, 2 hours per week

University course (UK, 2h)

Time and location: Wed 12:00–13:30 Seminarraum 2 Hohenstaufengasse 9, 1st floor

Begins: March 7, 2012


Description of course contents:

This course focuses on the topic of seasonality in time series. It is based on the monograph "The Econometric Analysis of Seasonal Time Series" by Eric Ghysels and Denise R. Osborn (Cambridge University Press, 2001). In particular, the following issues will be addressed:

1.  Introduction to Seasonal Processes (basic concepts of diverse models of seasonality)

2.  Deterministic Seasonality (seasonal dummies, tests with dummy seasonality as the null hypothesis, e.g. the Canova-Hansen test)

3.  Seasonal Unit Root Processes (seasonal random walk, tests with complex unit roots as their null, e.g. the HEGY test)

4.  Seasonal Adjustment Programs


The definite form of this course will be determined in the preliminary meeting and it may also depend on the number of participants. A suggestion is as follows. In the first half of the term, the instructor will present the topics listed above. In early May, this part closes with a short midterm test (45% weight in the final grade). In the second half of the term, participants take over and give presentations. The topics of these presentations can be a more advanced analysis of already addressed topics, parts of the monograph that have not yet been covered, or small empirical projects on seasonal data. Presenters will turn in written summaries of their work by the end of the term. This part carries 55% weight in the final grade.