business cycle


Definition of business cycle 

: a cycle of economic activity usually consisting of recession, recovery, growth, and decline

Examples of business cycle in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Economists understand even less about economic growth than about business cycles. The Economist, "Economists understand little about the causes of growth," 12 Apr. 2018 The consistently poor performance, especially relative to its regional neighbors, suggests that the causes are bad economic policies, not the business cycle or a downturn in a specific industry. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "The Regressive State of America," 25 Apr. 2018 In their view, a still-strong business cycle can overcome the pullback in monetary stimulus that helped to send the S&P 500 to its worst two-day loss in eight months while Treasuries tumbled. Sid Verma,, "Why the Global Rally Still Has Legs Despite Pain in U.S. Treasuries," 30 Jan. 2018 The tradition was never refuted or rejected — Keynes himself was a budget balancer over the business cycle. Christopher Demuth Sr., National Review, "Repairing Our Fractured Politics," 11 Jan. 2018 That is to be expected in a maturing business cycle. The Economist, "Even stockmarket bulls are more cautious than at the start of the year," 12 July 2018 Bond bulls have a spring in their step thanks to softer economic data and signals the business cycle is close to peaking. Sid Verma,, "Bond Bulls Rejoice: There's Growing Evidence of Peak Bear Market," 19 Apr. 2018 Although the world enjoys a synchronized expansion, the great financial crisis may not be truly over until the downside of this business cycle is managed., "Where Can You Invest to Take Advantage of Synchronized Growth?," 3 Apr. 2018 The company is owned by multinational diamond mining giant Anglo American plc, which earlier this month announced rough diamond sales of $550 million during its fourth business cycle of 2018. Kevin Mccoy, USA TODAY, "De Beers Group plans sales of laboratory-grown diamonds to U.S. consumers," 29 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'business cycle.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of business cycle

1858, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

13 Sep 2018

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The first known use of business cycle was in 1858

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business cycle


Financial Definition of business cycle

What It Is

The business cycle refers to an economy's periodic patterns of growth, recession, and recovery.

How It Works

An expanding economy is characterized by low unemployment, high productivity, and high consumer spending. When there is a decline in productivity, business revenues start to decline. Companies, consequently, reduce their workforces to cut costs. This results in rising unemployment and lower consumer confidence and spending, which are all hallmarks of a recession.

As the recession weakens, incremental increases in productivity and revenues lead to an economic recovery. The unemployment rate is gradually reduced as companies begin hiring again. A decreasing unemployment rate leads to an increase in consumer confidence and spending, and the economy begins expanding again.

Why It Matters

Business cycles are of particular interest to economists and policy makers. Government intervention is often introduced during recessionary periods in an effort to hasten recovery. By studying the historical patterns of economic expansion and contraction, it may be possible to understand and forecast future economic trends.

Source: Investing Answers

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evasion of direct action or statement

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