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Luca Agnello

28 October 2008
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 954
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Abstract
We decompose fiscal policy in three components: i) responsiveness, ii) persistence and iii) discretion. Using a sample of 132 countries, our results point out that fiscal policy tends to be more persistent than to respond to output conditions. We also found that while the effect of cross-country covariates is positive (negative) for discretion, it is negative (positive) for persistence thereby suggesting that countries with higher persistence have lower discretion and vice versa. In particular, while government size, country size and income have negative effects on the discretion component of fiscal policy, they tend to increase fiscal policy persistence.
JEL Code
E62 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook→Fiscal Policy
H50 : Public Economics→National Government Expenditures and Related Policies→General
19 March 2009
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 1032
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Abstract
We use a new approach to assess long-term fiscal developments. By analyzing the time varying behaviour of the two components of government spending and revenue - responsiveness and persistence - we are able to infer about the sources of fiscal behaviour. Drawing on quarterly data we estimate recursively these components within a system of government revenue and spending equations using a Three-Stage Least Square method. In this way we track fiscal developments, i.e. possible fiscal deteriorations and/or improvements for eight European Union countries plus the US. Results suggest that positions have not significantly changed for Finland, France, Germany, Spain, the United Kingdom and the US, whilst they have improved for Belgium, Italy, and the Netherlands.
JEL Code
E62 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook→Fiscal Policy
H50 : Public Economics→National Government Expenditures and Related Policies→General
28 April 2009
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 1042
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Abstract
This paper empirically analyzes the political, institutional and economic sources of public deficit volatility. Using the system-GMM estimator for linear dynamic panel data models and a sample of 125 countries analyzed from 1980 to 2006, we show that higher public deficit volatility is typically associated with higher levels of political instability and less democracy. In addition, public deficit volatility tends to be magnified for small countries, in the outcome of hyper-inflation episodes and for countries with a high degree of openness.
JEL Code
E31 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Price Level, Inflation, Deflation
E63 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook→Comparative or Joint Analysis of Fiscal and Monetary Policy, Stabilization, Treasury Policy
21 July 2009
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 1071
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Abstract
This study looks at real estate price booms and busts in industrialised countries. It identifies major and persistent deviations from long term trends for 18 countries and estimates the probabilities of their occurrence using a Random Effects Panel Probit model over the period 1980-2007. It finds that 1) most recent housing booms have been very persistent and of a significant magnitude; 2) there appears to be a strong correlation between the persistence and magnitude of booms and subsequent busts; 3) economic costs (in terms of GDP losses during the post-boom phase) depend significantly on the magnitude and duration of the boom and money and credit developments during that period; 4) a number of policy variables, including short term interest rates, local and global money and credit developments, and the incidence of mortgage market deregulation affect significantly the probability of experiencing booms and busts; and 5) the model is quite successful in identifying booms and busts early on.
JEL Code
E32 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Business Fluctuations, Cycles
R21 : Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics→Household Analysis→Housing Demand
R31 : Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics→Real Estate Markets, Spatial Production Analysis, and Firm Location→Housing Supply and Markets
25 November 2009
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 1118
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Abstract
This paper explores how discretionary fiscal policies on the revenue side of the government budget have reacted to economic fluctuations in European Union countries. For this purpose, it uses data on legislated revenue changes and structural indicators provided twice per year by National Central Banks of European Union countries in the ESCB framework for analysing fiscal policy. The analysis is based on the estimation of fiscal policy rules linking these measures of legislated fiscal policy changes to the output gap and other control variables. Then, baseline results are compared with regression estimates where variations of cyclically-adjusted indicators are used as proxy for discretionary fiscal policies, as conventionally proposed in the empirical literature on fiscal policy. Results suggest that, overall, legislated changes in taxes and social security contributions have responded in a strongly pro-cyclical way to the business cycle, while commonly-used cyclical-adjustment methods point to a-cyclicality.
JEL Code
E62 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook→Fiscal Policy
E65 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook→Studies of Particular Policy Episodes
H20 : Public Economics→Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue→General