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As a junior financial analyst in a brokerage firm, you have been asked by your boss to demonstrate the usefulness of the World Wide Web as a convenient resource for financial research.

1. Using a Microsoft Word document, provide your responses to these steps required for this task, as detailed below.

2. Read the following scenario for this task -
As a junior financial analyst in a brokerage firm, you have been asked by your boss to demonstrate the usefulness of the World Wide Web as a convenient resource for financial research. You have also been asked to answer a number of questions about the general conduct of monetary policy in the United States. When searching the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis' website for data, click on the "Economic Research" heading. Then select "Economic Data - FREDĀ®."

One popular source of U.S. data is the Federal Reserve Economic Database (FREDĀ®), maintained by the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis. Go to the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis' website to locate historical data on a number of key macroeconomic variables. Your objective is to use the World Wide Web to transfer information via the Internet, to use statistical graphics and analysis to process the information, and to compare the macroeconomic performance in the United States in the 1990s with three other recent decades-the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s. To complete this part of the task, take the following steps:
? Get monthly data, from January 1960 to December 1999, on core Consumer Price Index (CPI) to compare the inflation performance in the United States in the 1990s with other recent decades, such as the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s. In particular,
? calculate the inflation rate over the entire period and present a time series plot of the series (that is, graph the inflation rate series against time)
? calculate the average inflation rate and its standard deviation over each of the last four decades, and comment on the level and variability of inflation over time
? answer this question: Which were the worst and best decades in terms of inflation?

3. Another aspect of macroeconomic performance (beyond inflation performance) is growth in real GDP. Find an annual real GDP (chained in 1996 dollars) series in FRED and calculate the annual real GDP growth rate over the period from 1960 to 1999. To complete this part of the task, take the following steps:
? Graph the real growth rate of the economy.
? Present summary statistics for each of the last four decades on the average real growth rate and its volatility.
? Answer these questions:
? Which decade had the slowest real growth? The highest?
? Which decade had the most stable economic growth?

4. It would be an oversight to neglect the money supply and the role of monetary policy. Get monthly data, from January 1960 to December 1999, on the M1 measure of the money supply (a commonly used measure of the money supply). To complete this part of the task, take the following steps:
? Calculate and graph the money growth rate.
? Answer these questions:
? Which decade had the slowest money growth? The highest?
? Which decade had the lowest money growth volatility? The highest?
? Compare the average inflation rate and the average money growth rate over each of the four decades. Is the evidence consistent with the proposition of the quantity theory of money that slower money growth implies lower inflation?
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