Part of the Business terms glossary:

The business cycle is a repeated five-stage sequence of growth, stagnation and decline in a free-enterprise economy. 

Traditionally, the stages of the business cycle are growth, peak, recession, trough and recovery. Growth leads to a peak, which is followed by recession, a period of decline leading to a trough. The trough is the bottom of the cycle, followed by a recovery which eventually leads to a period of growth. 

The stage of the cycle is identified by fluctuations in gross domestic product (GDP), production, trade and activity in the financial sector. A full cycle, at least since the end of the second World War, lasts three-to-five years. 

This was last updated in July 2013
Contributor(s): Ivy Wigmore
Posted by: Margaret Rouse

Related Terms

Definitions

  • employee productivity

    - Employee productivity is an assessment of the efficiency of a worker or group of workers. Productivity may be evaluated in terms of the output of an employee in a specific period of time. This defi... (WhatIs.com)

  • SMAC (social, mobile, analytics and cloud)

    - SMAC (social, mobile, analytics and cloud) is the concept that four technologies are currently driving innovation in business. (SearchCIO.com)

  • LinkedIn

    - LinkedIn is a social networking site designed specifically for the business community. The goal of the site is to allow registered members to establish and document networks of people they know and... (WhatIs.com)

Glossaries

  • Business terms

    - Terms related to business, including definitions about project management and words and phrases about human resources, finance and vertical industries.

  • Internet applications

    - This WhatIs.com glossary contains terms related to Internet applications, including definitions about Software as a Service (SaaS) delivery models and words and phrases about web sites, e-commerce ...

Ask a Question. Find an Answer.Powered by ITKnowledgeExchange.com

Ask An IT Question

Get answers from your peers on your most technical challenges

Ask Question

Tech TalkComment

Share
Comments

    Results

    Contribute to the conversation

    All fields are required. Comments will appear at the bottom of the article.