DP4377 | Towards a Monthly Business Cycle Chronology for the Euro Area

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This Paper is an exercise in dating the euro area business cycle on a monthly basis. We construct several monthly European real GDP series, and then apply the Bry-Boschan (1971) procedure. Using this method we identify four business cycles. Studying further indicators of business activity, we conclude that the euro area has experienced three business cycles since 1970. We propose a simple amplitude/phase-length criterion for the Bry-Boschan procedure ruling out expansionary phases that are short and flat. Applying the extended procedure to US and European data, we are able to replicate approximately the dating decisions of NBER and CEPR.