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Does the expectation or realization of a federal election precipitate Canadian output growth?

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  • J. Stephen Ferris
  • Marcel-Cristian Voia

Abstract

This paper asks whether Canadian data is consistent with the predicted effects of political opportunism, partisanship, and political competition on real output growth since Confederation. Using annual data from 1870 to 2005 we find new support for an opportunistic electoral cycle in Canadian data but only if the actual election date used in most studies is replaced by an estimate of the incumbent governing party's subjectively held likelihood of an election arising. In our case the estimate is generated from a Cox-proportional hazard model. The paper explores in detail the issues raised by using a generated regressor to approximate a subjectively held expectation versus an observable proxy and argues that these conditions are met in our case. Finally we also find evidence consistent with partisan cycles in the data but much less evidence consistent with the hypothesis that changes in the degree of political competition have affected real output growth.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Canadian Economics Association in its journal Canadian Journal of Economics.

Volume (Year): 44 (2011)
Issue (Month): 1 (February)
Pages: 107-132

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Handle: RePEc:cje:issued:v:44:y:2011:i:1:p:107-132

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Cited by:
  1. Bjørnskov, Christian & Potrafke, Niklas, 2013. "The size and scope of government in the US states: Does party ideology matter?," Munich Reprints in Economics 20275, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  2. Potrafke, Niklas, 2009. "Political cycles and economic performance in OECD countries: empirical evidence from 1951-2006," MPRA Paper 23751, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  3. Mario Mechtel & Niklas Potrafke, 2013. "Electoral cycles in active labor market policies," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 156(1), pages 181-194, July.
  4. Mechtel, Mario & Potrafke, Niklas, 2009. "Political Cycles in Active Labor Market Policies," MPRA Paper 14270, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  5. J. Stephen Ferris, 2010. "Fiscal Policy from a Public Choice Perspective," Carleton Economic Papers 10-10, Carleton University, Department of Economics.
  6. J. Stephen Ferris, 2012. "Fixed versus Flexible Electoral Cycles," Carleton Economic Papers 12-04, Carleton University, Department of Economics, revised 26 Nov 2012.

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