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Fiscal Rules and Fiscal Performance in the European Union and Japan

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  • von-Hagen, Jurgen

    (U Bonn and IN U)

Abstract

Fiscal rules specify quantitative targets for key budgetary aggregates. In this paper, we review the experience with such rules in Japan and in the European Union (EU). Comparing the performance of fiscal policy in the 1980s and 1990s until 2003, we find that the fiscal rule of the 1980s exerted some but not much disciplinary influence on Japanese fiscal policy. The fiscal rule of the Maastricht Treaty had a significant impact on political budget cycles in the EU, but did little to constrain fiscal policy in the large member states. Since the start of European Monetary Union, the disciplinary effect of the fiscal rule in the EU has vanished. Next, we discuss the importance of budgetary institutions for the effectiveness of fiscal rules. In Europe, a number of countries adopted strong fiscal rules, that is, a fiscal rule combined with a design of the budget process enabling governments to commit to the rule. We find that strong fiscal rules have been effective. We conclude with some suggestions for the design of a strong fiscal rule in Japan.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Institute for Monetary and Economic Studies, Bank of Japan in its journal Monetary and Economic Studies.

Volume (Year): 24 (2006)
Issue (Month): 1 (March)
Pages: 25-60

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Handle: RePEc:ime:imemes:v:24:y:2006:i:1:p:25-60

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Cited by:
  1. Efthyvoulou, Georgios, 2011. "Political cycles under external economic constraints: Evidence from Cyprus," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 63(6), pages 638-662.
  2. Georgios Efthyvoulou, 2010. "Political Budget Cycles in the European Union and the Impact of Political Pressures: A dynamic panel regression analysis," Birkbeck Working Papers in Economics and Finance 1002, Birkbeck, Department of Economics, Mathematics & Statistics.
  3. Bernardino Benito & Francisco Bastida & Cristina Vicente, 2013. "Municipal elections and cultural expenditure," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer, vol. 37(1), pages 3-32, February.
  4. Philipp Paulus, 2006. "The final blow to the Stability Pact? EMU enlargement and government debt," Otto-Wolff-Institut Discussion Paper Series 03/2006, Otto-Wolff-Institut für Wirtschaftsordnung, Köln, Deutschland.
  5. Fiorella Kostoris Padoa Schioppa, 2006. "The 2005 Reform of the Stability and Growth Pact: Too Little, Too Late?," Bruges European Economic Research Papers 6, European Economic Studies Department, College of Europe.

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