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Economic Viewpoint

Do Economic Cycles Have an Expiry Date?

May 16, 2017
François Dupuis, Vice-President and Chief Economist • Hendrix Vachon, Senior Economist

In June, it will be eight years since the U.S. economy emerged from its last recession. Given that economic cycles often last between 6 and 10 years, do we need to worry about another recession? This Economic Viewpoint shows that time alone is not the best variable for predicting the end of a cycle. In fact, crises instead tend to occur randomly following shocks that are often hard to foresee. The emergence of imbalances and poor budgetary and monetary policy management are also sources of economic fluctuation; in the near term, however, there does not appear to be a reason to be overly concerned. It could take a few years for another recession to hit the United States, dragging the rest of the global economy down in its wake.