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International cycles

  • Cecchetti, Stephen G.
  • Kashyap, Anil K

We study twenty years of monthly production data for 11 manufacturing industries in 19 countries. Using the fact that in some countries production virtually shuts down for one summer month, together with the differences in the timing of aggregate cyclical fluctuations, we are able to learn about the cost structure of different industries. Our primary finding is that during a boom year summer shut-downs are shorter. Rather than increasing production further during the rest of the year, producers reallocate activity from high output months to low output months. We also find that there are important seasonal/cyclical interactions common to all industries within a given country, and that these countries effects are larger than the pure industry effects. The correlation of the cross-country differences with measures of taxation and labor market structure suggests the possibility that differences in the willingness (and ability) to substitute labor intertemporally are responsible for the variation.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal European Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 40 (1996)
Issue (Month): 2 (February)
Pages: 331-360

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Handle: RePEc:eee:eecrev:v:40:y:1996:i:2:p:331-360
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/eer

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  1. Lawrence H. Summers & Jonathan Gruber & Rodrigo Vergara, 1992. "Taxation and the Structure of Labor Markets: The Case of Corporatism," NBER Working Papers 4063, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Stephen G. Cecchetti & Anil K Kashyap & David W. Wilcox, 1995. "Do Firms Smooth the Seasonal in Production in a Boom? Theory and Evidence," NBER Working Papers 5011, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Newey, Whitney K & West, Kenneth D, 1987. "A Simple, Positive Semi-definite, Heteroskedasticity and Autocorrelation Consistent Covariance Matrix," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(3), pages 703-08, May.
  4. Craig Burnside & Martin Eichenbaum & Sergio Rebelo, 1995. "Capital Utilization and Returns to Scale," NBER Working Papers 5125, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Jeffrey A. Miron, 1996. "The Economics of Seasonal Cycles," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262133237, June.
  6. Backus, David K & Kehoe, Patrick J, 1992. "International Evidence of the Historical Properties of Business Cycles," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(4), pages 864-88, September.
  7. 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.
  8. J. Joseph Beaulieu & Jeffrey A. Miron, 1991. "A Cross Country Comparison of Seasonal Cycles and Business Cycles," Papers 0011, Boston University - Industry Studies Programme.
  9. Petersen, Mitchell A & Rajan, Raghuram G, 1994. " The Benefits of Lending Relationships: Evidence from Small Business Data," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 49(1), pages 3-37, March.
  10. R. Anton Braun & Charles L. Evans, 1996. "Seasonal Solow residuals and Christmas: a case for labor hoarding and increasing returns," Working Papers 575, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  11. Hansen, Lars Peter & Sargent, Thomas J., 1993. "Seasonality and approximation errors in rational expectations models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 55(1-2), pages 21-55.
  12. Stockman, Alan C., 1988. "Sectoral and national aggregate disturbances to industrial output in seven European countries," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(2-3), pages 387-409.
  13. Julio J. Rotemberg & Michael Woodford, 1993. "Dynamic General Equilibrium Models with Imperfectly Competitive Product Markets," NBER Working Papers 4502, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Alan S. Blinder & Louis J. Maccini, 1991. "Taking Stock: A Critical Assessment of Recent Research on Inventories," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 5(1), pages 73-96, Winter.
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