CFDP 2223

Popular Economic Narratives Advancing the Longest U.S. Economic Expansion 2009-2019


Publication Date: March 2020

Pages: 16


The U.S. economic expansion since 2009 is the longest on record since 1854, according to the National Bureau of Economic Research Business Cycle Dating Committee. This paper seeks to understand this phenomenon better by looking at the time paths of popular narratives over this interval, of stories that people have been telling that offer clues into their economic behavior. Six constellations of narratives are studied, identified by keywords “Great Depression,” “secular stagnation,” “sustainability,” “housing bubble,” “strong economy,” and “save more.”

Keywords: Economic fluctuations, Narratives, Stories, Great Depression, Secular stagnation, Sustainability, Housing bubble, Strong economy, Save more