Sustainability of High Public Debt: What the Historical Record Shows
AbstractProposals for reducing high public debt are sometimes viewed with scepticism, both because of adverse consequences for growth and political economy considerations. This paper looks into the debt history of Britain, Germany and France, to gain more insights into why national debt was accumulated and how it was reduced. The historical evidence studied here leaves only a limited role for public choice interpretations, as most of the historical debt record was dominated by international conflict. Whichever strategy towards reducing the debt burden was adopted, there seem to be no visible effects on long-term growth performance.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 1357.
Date of creation: Feb 1996
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Find related papers by JEL classification:
- E6 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook
- H6 - Public Economics - - National Budget, Deficit, and Debt
- N1 - Economic History - - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics; Industrial Structure; Growth; Fluctuations
- N4 - Economic History - - Government, War, Law, International Relations, and Regulation
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