ECON-301 Syllabus
Spring 2009

Course:                Macroeconomic Analysis; Meets M,W,F 11-11:50 Flarsheim Hall 310

Professor:            Dr. L. Randall Wray
Website:              http://cas.umkc.edu/econ/economics/faculty/wray/raymain.html
Office:                  202C Mannheim Hall
Office Hrs:         
Monday 1:30 – 2:30; Wednesday 2:30-3:30 and by appointment
Phone:                  235-5687 (note: don’t leave a message if I’m not in)
E-mail:                wrayr@umkc.edu (Preferred way to reach me!)

Teaching Assistant: Yeva Nersisyan; Office Mannheim Hall 202A; phone 235-5999; email ysnz72@umkc.edu Office Hours: Tuesday and Thursday 12:30-2:00


 

Textbook: Macroeconomics: Theories and Policies (9th Edition), Richard T. Froyen. ISBN 0-13-032859-6, and Study Guide for the Froyen book. You might be able to save some money by purchasing the book on-line at www.amazon.com, www.varsitybooks.com, or www.pattysbookstore.com.

 

Also Required: The General Theory, by John Maynard Keynes. You should already own this book, but in case you do not, it is available in the bookstore and on-line at:

http://etext.library.adelaide.edu.au/k/keynes/john_maynard/k44g/index.html

Course Description: ECON 301 is designed to build on the fundamentals of macroeconomics. ECON 201 (or its equivalent) is a prerequisite to this course.

Learning Objectives: We will develop the standard Keynesian macro model, including various interpretations of Keynes’ contributions in The General Theory. Each component part of aggregate demand will be considered in detail. We will take up some alternatives to standard Keynesian economics. Monetarist, New Classical, New Keynesian and Post-Keynesian theories will be examined. The Froyen text provides the standard interpretation of “Keynesian Economics” and the orthodox alternatives. The General Theory by Keynes provided the foundation for modern macroeconomics—it is perhaps the most important economics book, and, indeed, one of the most influential books ever written. We will read chapters from that in conjunction with chapters from the textbook to compare “Keynesian Economics” with the economics of Keynes.

Responsibilities: Students are expected to read the syllabus and to develop an understanding of the policies adopted. We expect students to attend all classes, to come to class on time and prepared, to do all work on time, and to behave appropriately in class. Students who prefer to skip class, arrive late, gab on the cell phone, and so on, should find another class. We will do our best to help each of you to achieve the grade you desire, but we will succeed only if you put in the requisite effort. We value effort and we reward it: no student who attends all classes, completes assignments on time, follows the policies described in this syllabus, and participates in class will fail this course.

It is the policy of the University of Missouri that there will be no discrimination based upon any factor other than the quality of each student's academic work. We adhere rigidly to that policy. If you have a physical condition that requires special arrangements, please let us know as soon as possible, so that we may make suitable accommodation. If you have any difficulty with the class whatsoever, please discuss it with us as soon as possible so that we may work together to overcome it. Americans with Disabilities: If you have special needs as addressed by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and need assistance, please notify the Office of Disability Services, A048 Brady Commons, 882-4696, or us, immediately. Reasonable efforts will be made to accommodate your special needs.

Finally, we will strictly adhere to the university’s policy regarding plagiarism. All borrowed work must be properly cited—whether in homework assignments or in work completed in class. Plagiarism is perhaps the most serious transgression encountered in academics and will not be overlooked. Academic honesty is fundamental to the activities and principles of a university. All members of the academic community must be confident that each person’s work has been responsibly and honorably acquired, developed, and presented. Any effort to gain an advantage not given to all students is dishonest whether or not the effort is successful. The academic community regards academic dishonesty as an extremely serious matter, with serious consequences that range from probation to expulsion. If a student is caught cheating, the instructor will assign a grade of Zero on that assignment, and the instructor will report the incident to the Office of the Provost.  When in doubt about plagiarism, paraphrasing, quoting, or collaboration, consult the course instructor.

Evaluation:

Participation and Attendance                10%

In-class (Friday) work                           20%

Homework                                            10%

Community Service                               5%

Midterm #1                                           10%

Midterm #2                                           10%

Midterm #3                                           10%    

Final                                                     25%

Exams: Only the final exam will be “comprehensive” in the sense that some questions on the exam will concern material covered earlier in the course. Review questions will be provided before the final exam. Exams will include multiple choice, true-false, graphs, data analysis, simple equations, and short essays.

Homework Policies: There will be approximately 4 homework assignments. We will always give you at least a week to complete your assignment. Due dates will be assigned in the coming weeks. Because we will go over the assignment on the day it is due, no late homework will be accepted. There will be no exceptions to this rule.* If you must miss class on the day an assignment is due, you need to make arrangements to have the assignment turned in before we go over it. 

    * Late homework will be accepted only when documentation for an excused absence is provided. If an illness or other unexpected problem prevents you from attending class, you can email to us your homework (before the beginning of class). If you are hospitalized, etc, and hence cannot complete your assignment on time, you can provide a doctor’s excuse and will be given a make-up assignment. Finally, if official university business (such as sports or debate) prevents you from completing an assignment, you will be given a make-up assignment if you provide a written notification from the appropriate university official.

Make-up Exams: Make-up exams will be given only to students with an excused absence (as described above). Documentation must be provided. Students who oversleep, forget about a test, aren’t prepared, have other exams scheduled on the same day, etc. will not be allowed to take a make-up exam.

In-class (Friday) work: Each Friday, students will complete for credit an assignment during class time. Some of these will be individual assignments, some will be group assignments. There will be short writing assignments, quizzes, exercises from the Study Guide, group projects, contests, and so on. The purpose of these assignments is to reinforce the week’s material (readings and Monday/Wednesday lectures). Each student is expected to arrive to class on Friday having completed all readings for the week. Each student will also have absorbed material from the lecture and will have used the Study Guide to ensure a good understanding of material from the text. Important: If you miss a Friday class, you will not be permitted to make-up the missed assignment. However, we will throw out the two lowest grades that you receive on Friday assignments—hence, if you miss a class or two, these grades can be thrown out. Students who are engaged in some official University function (sports/debate) that will cause them to miss more than two Fridays will need to bring to me written notification from the appropriate university official so that we can make alternative arrangements.

Community Service: Buckaroos. Each student is required to pay a tax equal to 5 Buckaroos (each is worth one percentage-point, for a total of 5% of your grade). The Buckaroo is a money internal to UMKC that is issued by the Department of Economics. Kelly Pinkham (pinkhamk@umkc.edu) manages the supply of Buckaroos; his office is in Manheim Hall 203G. The easiest way to get Buckaroos is to be involved in community services; each hour of involvement pays one Buckaroo. You, then, need to provide a proof of involvement to Kelly Pinkham, who will then give you some Buckaroos. There are many opportunities to perform community service in KC or even on campus (Kelly Pinkham has a list if you need some help; we will also be glad to recommend a good community service provider) but a good way to get the Buckaroos is to go to the UMKC Community Service Day. You will be sent an announcement about when the Community Service Day is and how to sign up for it. You may also contact the student life office yourself at stulife@umkc.edu or (816) 235-1407 to inquire about it.

 

Before performing a community service for which you want to get Buckaroos, you need to get a form from Kelly Pinkham. You may also download the buckaroo form from the department website: http://cas.umkc.edu/econ/index.htm

SCHEDULE OF TOPICS

 

(Notes: 1.There will be handouts, and may be other assignments, in addition to those listed below.

 2. Only those Fridays on which there will be an exam are listed; all other Fridays will be devoted to review, discussion, and in-class assignments.)

 

12-14 January—Introduction: Economics. Reading: Froyen Ch 1-2; Keynes Preface and Ch 1.

 

No class on January 19 (Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday Observance)

 

21 January¾(Neo)Classical Economics. Reading: Froyen Ch 3-4

 

26-28 January-- Keynes Aggregate Demand and consumption. Reading: Froyen Ch 5, Keynes Ch 2.

 

2-4 February— Intro to Keynesian Economics; Keynes’s theory of Consumption. Readings: Keynes Ch 3, 5, 10; Skim: Keynes Ch. 8,9.

 

Friday February 6: First Midterm

 

9-11 February—Aggregate Demand and Investment. Readings: Keynes Ch 12, 13; Skim: Keynes Ch 11.

 

16-18 February —Money, Interest rates, Aggregate Demand. Readings: Keynes Ch 17 (skim), Ch 18; Froyen Ch 6.

 

23-25 February —ISLM; Aggregate Supply and Demand. Readings: Froyen Ch 7, 8.

 

2-4 March —The Economics of Keynes (conclusion); Rise of Monetarism. Readings: Keynes Ch 24; Froyen Ch 9

 

Friday March 6: Second Midterm

 

9-11 March—Monetarism Mark II. Readings: Froyen Ch 10, 11

 

16-18 March —Real Business Cycle and New Keynesians. Readings: Froyen Ch 12, 13.

 

23-25 March – No Class (Spring Break)

 

30 March – 1 April —International Money. Readings: Froyen Ch 14; Wray: “Endogenous Money” (to be distributed)

 

6-8 April—Monetary Policy. Readings: Froyen Ch 16, 17; Wray: “Money and Inflation”

 

Friday April 10: Third Midterm

 

13-15 April - Fiscal Policy. Readings: Froyen Ch 18; Wray: “A monetary and fiscal framework for

economic stability”

 

20-22 April— Economic Growth. Readings: Froyen Ch 19, 20; Wray: “Demand Constraints and Big Government”

 

27-29 April—Inequality and Employment. Review. Readings: Forstater: “Life-sustaining, Life-enhancing Employment”; Dodd: Financial Stability, Social Justice, and Public Employment in the Work of Hyman P. Minsky”

 

1 May – College of Arts and Sciences Reading Day – No Class

 

5 May, Tuesday—Final Exam 1-3:00 pm

 

Note: The final exam will be held on the regularly scheduled day. Plan your vacation accordingly. There will be no exceptions.