Empirical Results on the Size Distribution of Business Cycle Phases

Publisher:
Elsevier Science BV
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Citation:
Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, 2004, 333 pp. 325 - 334
Issue Date:
2004-01
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We study the size distribution of business cycles phases, that is expansions and contractions, for a sample of 16 industrialized countries over 120 years. We find that the best-fitting distribution for both expansions and contractions is Weibull, meaning that business cycles possess a characteristic scale. Furthermore, we discuss how parameters estimates can be used to make inference on the probability a typical episode ends, that is on what economists call turning points.
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