Time Varying Cyclical Analysis for Economies in Transition
The identification of a possible European business cycle has been inconclusive and is complicated by the enlargement to the new member states and their transition to market economies. This paper shows how to decompose a business cycle into a time-frequency framework in a way that allows us to accommodate structural breaks and nonstationary variables. To illustrate, calculations of the growth rate spectrum and coherences for the Hungarian, Polish, German and French economies show the instability of the transition period. However, since then there has been convergence on the Eurozone economy at short cycle lengths, but little convergence in long cycles. We argue that this shows evidence of nominal convergence, but little real convergence. The Maastricht criteria for membership of the Euro therefore need to be adapted to test for real convergence.
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