By Professor Derek H. Aldcroft, Peter Fearon
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Extra resources for British Economic Fluctuations, 1790–1939
It would of course be quite easy to specifY a model which might fit the facts but there would be little point to the exercise unless we could test its validity, and to do this would require a complex and lengthy period of research. And in any case, there is no reason to suppose that one model would serve our purpose. However, the absence of the ordered precision of a verifiable model or theory of the cycle should not inhibit us from examining the causal significance of some of the factors which appear to have played an important part in business cycles.
Not all the components of aggregate demand behave in the same way, however. P. than expenditure on non-durables and services since it reacts more quickly to changes in income and is also subject to an accelerator and stock adjustment effect. Expendi1 A useful empirical study showing the relative stability of the consumption function and its resistance to deflationary pressures is that by S. H. Hyman, 'The Cyclical Behaviour of Consumers' Income and Expenditure, 1921-1961', Southern Economic]ourntJi, XXXII (1965).
Similar considerations apply to investment though here the issue is a little more complex. Data limitations have circumscribed the analysis of this variable, and most of the discussion relates to the 1 W. H. Beveridge, 'Unemployment in the Trade Cycle', Economic Journal, XLIX (1939); 'The Trade Cycle in Britain Before 1850: A Postscript', Oxford Economic Papers, IV (1940); and Full Employment in a Free Society (1944) p. 294. Beveridge's findings were supported for the inter-war period by E. H. Phelps Brown and G.
British Economic Fluctuations, 1790–1939 by Professor Derek H. Aldcroft, Peter Fearon