Handbooks of Research Methods and Applications series
Edited by Frederic S. Lee and Bruce Cronin
Chapter 28: Detecting business cycles
Business cycles are a notoriously elusive phenomenon for theorists, practitioners, and policy-makers. They are just one of a multitude of cyclical behaviors that a capitalist market economy exhibits. Detecting them requires a clear vision not only of the dynamics that generate them, but also of how to approach isolating the cyclical component in time series data. This chapter provides an overview of the theoretical approaches to thinking about what causes business cycles, the ways in which time series analysis has been used to detect cyclical patterns in data, and a discussion of the methodological challenges that heterodox economists face when selecting time series techniques and the advantages they have for more clearly understanding the dynamics which lie behind data.
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