Macroeconomic performance and the business cycle
The unemployment rate, the inflation rate (percentage change in CPI) and the rate of economic growth (percentage
change in Real GDP) are key indicators of the health of any economy. As economies move through the business
cycle these rates increase and decrease.
In this assignment, you need to discuss these three indicators of the health of the Australian economy
over the period 2000 to 2014.
First, download Australian Bureau of Statistics data on real GDP, unemployment, labour force, consumer price
index for the period 2000 to 2014 in MS Excel format from the Assignment link on Blackboard.
Then, in your spreadsheet, construct three new variables for Real GDP growth rates, unemployment rates and
inflation rates. Provide these data as a table in your MS Word document.
Next, construct a line graph of these indicators using the graphing tool in your spreadsheet. Use two vertical axes
– left hand side for percentage/rates and right hand side for Real GDP. Copy and paste this into your MS Word
Now, identify one business cycle during this period. Explain the stages and causes of this business cycle in terms
of the indicators. Make particular reference to the peak and trough in this business cycle.
Finally, from the information in the graph, predict what might happen to the inflation rate, the unemployment rate
and the growth rate from 2014 to 2020. Explain your predictions.
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