Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

What's real about the business cycle?

Contents:

Author Info

  • James D. Hamilton

Abstract

This paper argues that a linear statistical model with homoskedastic errors cannot capture the nineteenth-century notion of a recurring cyclical pattern in key economic aggregates. A simple nonlinear alternative is proposed and used to illustrate that the dynamic behavior of unemployment seems to change over the business cycle, with the unemployment rate rising more quickly than it falls. Furthermore, many but not all economic downturns are also accompanied by a dramatic change in the dynamic behavior of short-term interest rates. It is suggested that these nonlinearities are most naturally interpreted as resulting from short-run failures in the employment and credit markets and that understanding these short-run failures is the key to understanding the nature of the business cycle.

Download Info

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
File URL: http://research.stlouisfed.org/publications/review/05/07/Hamilton.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis in its journal Review.

Volume (Year): (2005)
Issue (Month): Jul ()
Pages: 435-452

as in new window
Handle: RePEc:fip:fedlrv:y:2005:i:jul:p:435-452:n:v.87no.4

Contact details of provider:
Postal: P.O. Box 442, St. Louis, MO 63166
Fax: (314)444-8753
Web page: http://www.stlouisfed.org/
More information through EDIRC

Order Information:
Email:
Web: http://www.stls.frb.org/research/order/pubform.html

Related research

Keywords: Business cycles ; Unemployment ; Interest rates;

Other versions of this item:

Find related papers by JEL classification:

References

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
as in new window
  1. Neumeyer, Pablo Andrés & Perri, Fabrizio, 2004. "Business Cycles in Emerging Economies: The Role of Interest Rates," CEPR Discussion Papers 4482, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Granger, Clive W.J. & Machina, Mark J., 2006. "Structural attribution of observed volatility clustering," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 135(1-2), pages 15-29.
  3. Wesley Clair Mitchell, 1927. "Business Cycles: The Problem and Its Setting," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number mitc27-1, July.
  4. Ang, Andrew & Bekaert, Geert, 2002. "Regime Switches in Interest Rates," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 20(2), pages 163-82, April.
  5. René Garcia, 1995. "Asymptotic Null Distribution of the Likelihood Ratio Test in Markov Switching Models," CIRANO Working Papers 95s-07, CIRANO.
  6. van Dijk, Dick & Franses, Philip Hans & Paap, Richard, 2002. "A nonlinear long memory model, with an application to US unemployment," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 110(2), pages 135-165, October.
  7. Marine Carrasco & Liang Hu, 2004. "Optimal test for Markov switching," 2004 Meeting Papers 374, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  8. Brock, William A. & Mirman, Leonard J., 1972. "Optimal economic growth and uncertainty: The discounted case," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 4(3), pages 479-513, June.
  9. Philip Rothman, 1998. "Forecasting Asymmetric Unemployment Rates," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 80(1), pages 164-168, February.
  10. James D. Hamilton, 1988. "Role Of The International Gold Standard In Propagating The Great Depression," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 6(2), pages 67-89, 04.
  11. Hamilton, James D., 1987. "Monetary factors in the great depression," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 145-169, March.
  12. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1982. "Time to Build and Aggregate Fluctuations," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(6), pages 1345-70, November.
  13. Stock, James H., 1987. "Measuring Business Cycle Time," Scholarly Articles 3425950, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  14. Hamilton, James D., 1996. "Specification testing in Markov-switching time-series models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 70(1), pages 127-157, January.
  15. Stock, James H, 1987. "Measuring Business Cycle Time," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(6), pages 1240-61, December.
  16. Miron, Jeffrey A, 1986. "Financial Panics, the Seasonality of the Nominal Interest Rate, and theFounding of the Fed," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(1), pages 125-40, March.
  17. J. Bradford De Long & Lawrence H. Summers, 1986. "Are Business Cycles Symmetric?," NBER Working Papers 1444, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Arthur F. Burns & Wesley C. Mitchell, 1946. "Measuring Business Cycles," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number burn46-1, July.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

Citations

Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
as in new window

Cited by:
  1. Mark W. Watson, 2005. "Commentary on "what's real about the business cycle?"," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Jul, pages 453-458.
  2. Cem Cakmakli & Richard Paap & Dick van Dijk, 2011. "Measuring and Predicting Heterogeneous Recessions," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 11-154/4, Tinbergen Institute, revised 15 Nov 2011.
  3. Luca Agnello & Vitor Castro & Ricardo M. Sousa, 2011. "How Does Fiscal Policy React to Wealth Composition and Asset Prices?," GEMF Working Papers 2011-18, GEMF - Faculdade de Economia, Universidade de Coimbra.
  4. Alisdair McKay & Ricardo Reis, 2006. "The Brevity and Violence of Contractions and Expansions," NBER Working Papers 12400, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Stöber, Jakob & Czado, Claudia, 2014. "Regime switches in the dependence structure of multidimensional financial data," Computational Statistics & Data Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 76(C), pages 672-686.
  6. Yetman, James, 2011. "Exporting recessions: International links and the business cycle," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 110(1), pages 12-14, January.
  7. Luca Agnello & Gilles Dufrénot & Ricardo M. Sousa, 2012. "Adjusting the U.S. Fiscal Policy for Asset Prices: Evidence from a TVP-MS Framework," NIPE Working Papers 20/2012, NIPE - Universidade do Minho.
  8. Benoit Bellone, 2005. "Classical Estimation of Multivariate Markov-Switching Models using MSVARlib," Econometrics 0508017, EconWPA.
  9. Thomas B. King, 2005. "Labor productivity and job-market flows: trends, cycles, and correlations," Supervisory Policy Analysis Working Papers 2005-04, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
  10. Chai, Jian & Guo, Ju-E. & Meng, Lei & Wang, Shou-Yang, 2011. "Exploring the core factors and its dynamic effects on oil price: An application on path analysis and BVAR-TVP model," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(12), pages 8022-8036.
  11. Kang, Wensheng & Ratti, Ronald A., 2013. "Structural oil price shocks and policy uncertainty," MPRA Paper 49007, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  12. Julie L. Hotchkiss & John C. Robertson, 2006. "Asymmetric labor force participation decisions over the business cycle: evidence from U.S. microdata," Working Paper 2006-08, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
  13. Éric Dubois, 2006. "Présentation générale," Économie et Prévision, Programme National Persée, vol. 172(1), pages 1-9.
  14. Spyros Andreopoulos, 2006. "The real interest rate, the real oil price, and US unemployment revisited," Bristol Economics Discussion Papers 06/592, Department of Economics, University of Bristol, UK.

Lists

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

Statistics

Access and download statistics

Corrections

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:fip:fedlrv:y:2005:i:jul:p:435-452:n:v.87no.4. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Anna Xiao).

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.