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Seasonality and Capacity: an Application to Italy

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  • Guido de Blasio

    ()
    (Banca dÂ’Italia and International Monetary Fund)

  • Federico Mini

    (The World Bank)

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    Abstract

    Information on seasonal frequencies can provide valuable insights for understanding economic fluctuations. This is particularly true for Italy, where the variability of production in manufacturing is extremely high and almost entirely due to seasonal factors. This paper identifies the qualitative and quantitative features of seasonal fluctuations in Italy and compares them to those of France and Germany. Seasonality in Italy is twice as large as in France, six times larger as in Germany. Qualitatively, seasonal fluctuations are extremely homogeneous across technologically different manufacturing sectors, giving informal support to the contention that Italian seasonality may be due to endogenous factors (synergies across agents) as opposed to exogenous ones (seasonality resulting from changes in underlying technology and preferences). Next, we quantify the amount of seasonally-driven excess capacity in the Italian manufacturing sector, and show that it is around thirty percent higher than that in France or Germany.

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    File URL: http://www.bancaditalia.it/pubblicazioni/econo/temidi/td01/td403_01/td403/tema_403_01.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area in its series Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) with number 403.

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    Date of creation: Jun 2001
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    Handle: RePEc:bdi:wptemi:td_403_01

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    Web page: http://www.bancaditalia.it
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    Related research

    Keywords: business cycle; seasonality;

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    1. Carpenter, Robert E & Levy, Daniel, 1998. "Seasonal Cycles, Business Cycles, and the Comovement of Inventory Investment and Output," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 30(3), pages 331-46, August.
    2. John Haltiwanger & Russell Cooper, 1992. "The Aggregate Implications Of Machine Replacement: Theory And Evidence," Working Papers 92-12, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
    3. Barsky, Robert B & Miron, Jeffrey A, 1989. "The Seasonal Cycle and the Business Cycle," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(3), pages 503-34, June.
    4. R. Anton Braun & Charles L. Evans, 1991. "Seasonality and equilibrium business cycle theories," Working Paper Series, Macroeconomic Issues 91-23, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
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    7. J. Bradford DeLong & Lawrence H. Summers, 1988. "How Does Macroeconomic Policy Affect Output?," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 19(2), pages 433-494.
    8. Russell Cooper & John Haltiwanger, 1993. "Evidence on Macroeconomic Complementarities," NBER Working Papers 4577, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. repec:fth:harver:1418 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1982. "Time to Build and Aggregate Fluctuations," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(6), pages 1345-70, November.
    11. Hylleberg, S. & Engle, R.F. & Granger, C.W.J. & Yoo, B.S., 1988. "Seasonal, Integration And Cointegration," Papers 6-88-2, Pennsylvania State - Department of Economics.
    12. Beaulieu, J Joseph & MacKie-Mason, Jeffrey K & Miron, Jeffrey A, 1992. "Why Do Countries and Industries with Large Seasonal Cycles also Have Large Business Cycles?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 107(2), pages 621-56, May.
    13. Fabio Fornari & Marcello Pericoli, 2000. "Stock Values and Fundamentals; Link or Irrationality?," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 378, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
    14. Cooper, Russell & John, Andrew, 1988. "Coordinating Coordination Failures in Keynesian Models," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 103(3), pages 441-63, August.
    15. Long, John B, Jr & Plosser, Charles I, 1983. "Real Business Cycles," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 91(1), pages 39-69, February.
    16. Chatterjee, Satyajit & Ravikumar, B., 1992. "A neoclassical model of seasonal fluctuations," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 59-86, February.
    17. Russell Cooper & John Haltiwanger, 1992. "Autos and the National Industrial Recovery Act: Evidence on Industry Complementarities," NBER Working Papers 4100, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    18. Canova, Fabio & Hansen, Bruce E, 1995. "Are Seasonal Patterns Constant over Time? A Test for Seasonal Stability," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 13(3), pages 237-52, July.
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