The Sustainability of Fiscal Policy in the United States
AbstractThe paper examines the sustainability of U.S. fiscal policy, finding substantial evidence in favor. I summarize the U.S. fiscal record from 1792-2003, critically review sustainability conditions and their testable implications, and apply them to U.S. data. I particularly emphasize the ramifications of economic growth. A “growth dividend” has historically covered the entire interest bill on the U.S. debt. Unit root tests on real series, unscaled by GDP, are distorted by the series’ severe heteroskedasticity. The most credible evidence in favor of sustainability is the robust positive response of primary surpluses to fluctuations in the debt-GDP ratio.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 1446.
Date of creation: 2005
Date of revision:
public debt; sustainability; primary surplus; unit root;
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ACC-2005-04-30 (Accounting & Auditing)
- NEP-ALL-2005-04-30 (All new papers)
- NEP-HIS-2005-04-30 (Business, Economic & Financial History)
- NEP-MAC-2005-04-30 (Macroeconomics)
- NEP-PBE-2005-04-30 (Public Economics)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Matthew B. Canzoneri & Robert E. Cumby & Behzad T. Diba, 1998.
"Is the Price Level Determined by the Needs of Fiscal Solvency?,"
NBER Working Papers
6471, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Matthew B. Canzoneri & Robert E. Cumby & Behzad T. Diba, 2001. "Is the Price Level Determined by the Needs of Fiscal Solvency?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(5), pages 1221-1238, December.
- Canzoneri, Matthew B & Cumby, Robert & Diba, Behzad, 1998. "Is the Price Level Determined by the Needs of Fiscal Solvency?," CEPR Discussion Papers 1772, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Shaghil Ahmed & John H. Rogers, 1995.
"Government budget deficits and trade deficits: are present value constraints satisfied in long-term data?,"
International Finance Discussion Papers
494, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
- Ahmed, Shaghil & Rogers, John H., 1995. "Government budget deficits and trade deficits Are present value constraints satisfied in long-term data?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(2), pages 351-374, November.
- Ahmed, S. & Rogers, J.H., 1993. "Government Budget Deficits and Trade Deficits: Are Present Value Constraints Satisfied in Long-Term Data?," Papers 5-93-6, Pennsylvania State - Department of Economics.
- Kwiatkowski, Denis & Phillips, Peter C. B. & Schmidt, Peter & Shin, Yongcheol, 1992.
"Testing the null hypothesis of stationarity against the alternative of a unit root : How sure are we that economic time series have a unit root?,"
Journal of Econometrics,
Elsevier, vol. 54(1-3), pages 159-178.
- Kwiatkowski, D. & Phillips, P.C.B. & Schmidt, P., 1990. "Testing the Null Hypothesis of Stationarity Against the Alternative of Unit Root : How Sure are we that Economic Time Series have a Unit Root?," Papers 8905, Michigan State - Econometrics and Economic Theory.
- Denis Kwiatkowski & Peter C.B. Phillips & Peter Schmidt, 1991. "Testing the Null Hypothesis of Stationarity Against the Alternative of a Unit Root: How Sure Are We That Economic Time Series Have a Unit Root?," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 979, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
- Andrew Abel & Gregory N. Mankiw & Lawrence H. Summers & Richard Zeckhauser, .
"Assessing Dynamic Efficiency: Theory and Evidence,"
Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research Working Papers
14-88, Wharton School Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research.
- Hamilton, James D & Flavin, Marjorie A, 1986.
"On the Limitations of Government Borrowing: A Framework for EmpiricalTesting,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 76(4), pages 808-19, September.
- James D. Hamilton & Marjorie A. Flavin, 1985. "On the Limitations of Government Borrowing: A Framework for Empirical Testing," NBER Working Papers 1632, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Beveridge, Stephen & Nelson, Charles R., 1981. "A new approach to decomposition of economic time series into permanent and transitory components with particular attention to measurement of the `business cycle'," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 7(2), pages 151-174.
- Trehan, Bharat & Walsh, Carl E, 1991.
"Testing Intertemporal Budget Constraints: Theory and Applications to U.S. Federal Budget and Current Account Deficits,"
Journal of Money, Credit and Banking,
Blackwell Publishing, vol. 23(2), pages 206-23, May.
- Bharat Trehan & Carl E. Walsh, 1988. "Testing intertemporal budget constraints: theory and applications to U. S. federal budget and current account deficits," Working Papers in Applied Economic Theory 88-03, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
- Trehan, Bharat & Walsh, Carl E., 1988.
"Common trends, the government's budget constraint, and revenue smoothing,"
Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control,
Elsevier, vol. 12(2-3), pages 425-444.
- Bharat Trehan & Carl E. Walsh, 1987. "Common trends, the government's budget constraint, and revenue smoothing," Working Papers in Applied Economic Theory 87-11, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
This item has more than 25 citations. To prevent cluttering this page, these citations are listed on a separate page. reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.Access and download statisticsgeneral information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Julio Saavedra).
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.