Seminars

Money Seminars

The following is an indicative list. Not all courses are necessarily offered every academic year; and the program may be enriched with further courses when appropriate and feasible.

 

Topics in Monetary and Financial Economics

The seminar discusses macroeconomic models designed to study monetary policy and its impact on real and financial variables. Specific questions to be addresses are: How does monetary policy affect monetary variables such as prices, interest rates, and governmental debt? Can it be used to foster economic growth and increase real variables such as output, wages, and employment? What are the mutual interdependencies between monetary and fiscal policy? Which objectives should monetary policy pursue? What are the welfare cost of inflation? Seminar topics are based on the two major workhorses of modern macroeconomics in this field: First, the New Classical framework which assumes price-taking behavior of all market participants combined with perfect price flexibility on all markets. Second, the New Keynesian models which incorporate various frictions such as monopolistic competition and/or staggered price adjustments. In recent years, the New Keynesian approach has become the dominant framework used at central banks to guide decisions on monetary policy.

 

The Macroeconomics of Inequality

The seminar deals with the macroeconomics of income and wealth inequality. The major questions to be studies are: (i) which mechanisms generate the observed inequality among households, and, (ii) what is the role of public policy with respect to these inequalities. To tackle these questions, we are going to review recent developments in the literature of heterogeneous agent dynamic macroeconomic models. The quantitative economic models feature households who differ from each other in terms of luck and/or innate factors such as ability to learn or produce in the labor market and initial asset positions. Due to these differences and the consequent household decisions, the models generate different patterns of income, wealth and consumption inequality

 

Macroeconomics of Housing Markets

This seminar deals with the incorporation of housing consumption and homeownership choice in quantitative macroeconomic models with heterogeneous households. Utilizing such model tools allows researchers to study: (i) the economic determinants of homeownership, and (ii) the consequences of various policy changes in the housing market for household welfare and inequality. Most studies of housing in macroeconomics concentrate on the United States. Next to reviewing those studies, we are going to take a look at quantitative models aiming to understand housing markets in European countries. The macroeconomic models usually rely on collateral constraints, incomplete markets and transaction costs as key ingredients. Such frictions in the housing market are empirically justified and leave room for public policy interventions.

 

Monetary Models of Inflation, Employment and Welfare

The seminar discusses macroeconomic models designed to study monetary policy and its impact on real and financial variables. Specific questions to be addresses are: How does monetary policy affect monetary variables such as prices, interest rates, and governmental debt? Can it be used to foster economic growth and increase real variables such as output, wages, and employment? What are the mutual interdependencies between monetary and fiscal policy? Which objectives should monetary policy pursue? What are the welfare cost of inflation? Seminar topics are based on the two major workhorses of modern macroeconomics in this field: First, the New Classical framework which assumes price-taking behavior of all market participants combined with perfect price flexibility on all markets. Second, the New Keynesian models which incorporate various frictions such as monopolistic competition and/or staggered price adjustments. In recent years, the New Keynesian approach has become the dominant framework used at central banks to guide decisions on monetary policy.

 

Topics in Growth Theory: Specialisation, Automation and Factor Substitution

This seminar deals with theoretical and empirical aspects of economic growth with a special focus on specialization in production, automation of production and (partial or complete) substitution of factor inputs. Traditional models of economic growth have not adequately considered these aspects of development, structural change and transition. Therefore, new models have been developed that should be able to account for these characteristics of modern economic growth.

 


 

Finance Seminars

The following is an indicative list. Not all courses are necessarily offered every academic year; and the program may be enriched with further courses when appropriate and feasible.

 

Central Banks and Asset Prices

The primary objective of this Master seminar is to introduce students to the interplay between central banks and their monetary policy and developments in financial markets. Students will be given an academic paper as background reading and starting point for their paper.

 

Garage - The Student Lab for your own Startup

Entrepreneurial thinking and acting are core competencies of the 21st century. This course teaches the processes and techniques which are necessary to start an own business. Students from different disciplines form interdisciplinary teams and develop their own business ideas and models. In this way - comparable to the real start-up situations - different perspectives and expertise are incorporated into marketable business projects. Students learn about tools and methods that are useful for the discovery, evaluation and implementation of their own business ideas. At the beginning of the semester, students have the opportunity to propose their own business ideas. The best proposals will be further developed in teams in a pre-structured process (preliminary market analysis, competitive analysis etc.). At the end of the semester, students have the opportunity to present their business ideas to potential investors and experts. Designed as real world business situations students learn throughout the entire course, what is needed in order to develop and implement a successful business model.

 

Personal Finance

There is abundant evidence that households make costly mistakes when it comes to personal finances and saving for retirement. Observable household investment and financing behavior is rarely consistent with the precepts of modern finance theory. This seminar will not only deal with typical household financial decisions and widespread mistakes but will focus on possible instruments and mechanisms to help households improve their decision making. Topics will include long-term asset allocation, portfolio choice in the presence of background risk, the role of financial advice, financial product design, emerging retail banking business models (FinTech) and changes in pension systems. Seminar participants are expected to write a paper that surveys the relevant literature.

 

Selected Topics in Insurance Regulation

The objective of the seminar is to build on the knowledge acquired in the bachelor seminar on European Insurance Regulation. Students are required to research a specific topic, to report about their research and to discuss the results of the research with their fellow students. As opposed to the bachelor seminar, the topics in the master seminar will have to be researched on a comparative basis. The topics will be provided in advance and will relate to issues such as the ORSA, key governance functions, assessment of fit and proper requirement for key function holders, internal model approval, market conduct issues, insurance distribution, etc.

 

Equity Governance

In the seminar Equity Governance participants will deal with methods of steering and controlling of an enterprise. In the framework of the seminar, corporate governance will be interpreted in a broader sense as the interaction of decision-making processes, organizational execution and financial management, which support long-term value creation and a sustainable company direction. The seminar follows a prescribed, structured approach from an owners perspective (equity governance). The approach focuses on proven tools and concepts, which allow active owners/investors, supervisory/advisory boards, consultants as well as the management itself to identify strengths and weaknesses as well as opportunities and threats in order to give new impetus and momentum. Adaptions refer to, for example, organizational structure, processes and systems, and leadership methods. Key words outlining the different themes of the seminar include: defining the investment case, shaping the board agenda, adjusting to industry dynamics, creating portfolio momentum, optimizing capital intensity (including an excursus on digitization and automation), improving productivity and providing debt capacity/increasing resilience. Students may have the opportunity to explore aspects of corporate governance in a workshop with a company against the background of the structured approach as a real case study and thus have the possibility to experience the potential of governance methods. The knowledge acquired in the seminar is relevant for various management functions, which show a broad and interdisciplinary assignment profile.

 

Empirical Asset Pricing

The seminar deals with recent developments in empirical asset pricing. Each student will be assigned essentially one research paper which has to be assessed critically. The students are supposed to review the related literature, try to replicate the empirical results of the paper on their own, try to extend the findings with different datasets, different methodologies, robustness checks etc.

 

Asset Management

The objective of this Seminar is to equip students with advanced theory and techniques relevant to asset management. Asset management is the systematic process of optimally allocating funds to both the traditional (equities, bonds, and real estate) as well as alternative (e.g. hedge funds, commodities, and life-contingent claims) asset classes, taking into account their respective risk and return profiles as well as the interdependencies among them. This process is highly relevant for institutional investors (e.g. mutual funds, insurance companies, and pension funds) but increasingly also for households trying to make optimal consumption and saving decisions over the life-cycle. Course participants are required to solve the assigned problems either using Matlab, Python or R. Four introductory sessions to scientific computing will be given to familiarize students with programming in Matlab. Despite being allowed to solve the problems using Python or R, course instructors can only assist students with programming in Matlab.

Top