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Article
The Procyclical Behavior of Total Factor Productivity in the United States, 1890-2004
Economics
  • Alexander J. Field, Santa Clara University
Document Type
Article
Publication Date
6-1-2010
Publisher
Economic History Association / Cambridge University Press
Disciplines
Abstract
Between 1890 and 2004 total factor productivity (TFP) growth in the United States has been strongly procyclical, while labor productivity growth has been mildly so. This article argues that these results are not simply a statistical artifact, as Mathew Shapiro and others have argued. Procyclicality resulted principally from demand shocks interacting with capital services which are relatively invariant over the cycle. This account contrasts with explanations emphasizing labor hoarding as well as those offered by the real business cycle (RBC) program, in which TFP shocks (deviations from trend) are themselves the cause of cycles.
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Copyright © 2010 Cambridge University Press. Reprinted with permission.

The final version can be found at -https://doi.org/10.1017/S0022050710000306

Citation Information
Field, Alexander J. 2010. “The Procyclical Behavior of Total Factor Productivity in the United States, 1890-2004.” Journal of Economic History 70 (June): 326-50.