US presidential elections and real GDP growth, 1961-2004

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In this paper I show that, since 1960, an electoral cycle in US output growth can both be seen by the naked eye in the raw data and confirmed by a statistical analysis that allows for rational partisan effects as well as a wide range of control variables. That is, controlling for multiple lags of interest rate changes, inflation, money growth, energy prices, lagged output growth, government spending (or its growth) and temporary partisan effects, the timing of elections exerts a significant influence on quarterly real GDP growth.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)337-352
Number of pages16
JournalPublic Choice
Issue number3-4
StatePublished - Jun 2008


  • Monetary economics
  • Political business cycle
  • Presidential elections


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