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Old 01-13-2003, 03:22 PM   #1
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Need (English) translation of economic phrase


For the past months (well, I think it's more like 1 1/2 years) I've been working on my final thesis. It's the only thing standing in the way between me and graduation. Yeah, I know, writing a thesis is so interesting. I'll be a happy man when I can finally finish it. And that moment is coming soon.

Anyhow, my thesis is in English, but for the research I did some interviews in Dutch (with Dutch persons of course). In one of those interview the interviewee used a (economic) phase I haven't been able to translate correctly in English. The literal translation is something like 'pig cycle', but I know it's not correct.
Let me explain the phrase: It describes the situation that, when there is a large shortage for a good/service, everyone starts producing that good/service. This results in a large surplus, after which most will stop producing. This, in turn, leads again to a large shortage, after which they start producing, etc.
(In the pig analogy, when the price of pork is high, all farmers start breeding pigs, resulting in a large surplus and a drop in the price of pork. This will cause the farmers to produce other goods, causing a sharp increase in the price of pork, etc.)

Does anyone know the correct phrase for this extreme cyclistic behaviour?

Thank you!


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Old 01-13-2003, 04:09 PM   #2
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Old 01-14-2003, 02:29 PM   #3
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A quick Google search only turns up generic-sounding terms like "supply/demand cycle" or "shortage/surplus cycle."

Maybe we English-speaking types should start using the term "pig cycle."
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