Basic innovations and their diffusion, the expansion or contraction of the level of economic activity and the volume of international trade, rising sovereign debts and their defaults, conflicts and the outbreak of wars, are some of the major phenomena appearing during the downswing or upswing phases of long cycles. In this article, we examine the extent to which these phenomena constitute stylized facts of the different phases of long cycles which recur quite regularly in the turbulent economic history of capitalism. The main argument of this paper is that the evolution of long cycles is a result of the long-run movement of profitability. During the downswing of a long cycle, falling profitability induces innovation investment and the associated with it ‘creative destruction’ of the capital stock that eventually set the stage for the upswing phase of a new long cycle.
Friday, February 23, 2018
3:30pm – 5:00pm
Small reception to follow in Room 426. All are invited to attend.