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On the Regional Incidence of Public Investment in Highways in the USA

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  • Alfredo M. Pereira

    ()
    (Department of Economics, College of William and Mary)

  • Jorge M. Andraz

    ()
    (Faculdade de Economia, Universidade do Algarve)

Abstract

The objective of this paper is to investigate the economic and fiscal impact of road infrastructure investment in Portugal, focusing on the effects for each administrative region of both local investments and investments in other regions. We estimate VAR models for the national economy as well as for each of the five regions and using the associated impulse-response functions we find that investment in road infrastructures has been a powerful instrument to increase private investment, to create new permanent jobs and to promote long-term growth in all regions. More importantly, investment in road infrastructure, both at the aggregate level and for each one of the five regions, generates fiscal effects that largely exceed the initial investment itself. Accordingly, there is no trade-off in the long-term between the potentially positive economic effects and the potentially negative budgetary effects of such investments, i.e., both economic and budgetary effects are positive. As a corollary, policies that would reduce current road investment as a response to the current budgetary concerns will result in lower long-term growth as well as worse budgetary conditions in the future.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Department of Economics, College of William and Mary in its series Working Papers with number 70.

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Length: 36 pages
Date of creation: 14 Jan 2008
Date of revision: 15 Sep 2010
Handle: RePEc:cwm:wpaper:70

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Keywords: public investment; road transportation infrastructures; regional spillovers; Portugal;

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  1. Aschauer, David Alan, 1989. "Does public capital crowd out private capital?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 171-188, September.
  2. Douglas Holtz-Eakin & Amy Ellen Schwartz, 1995. "Spatial Productivity Spillovers from Public Infrastructure: Evidence from State Highways," NBER Working Papers 5004, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Alfredo Pereira & Jorge Andraz, 2006. "Public investment in transportation infrastructures and regional asymmetries in Portugal," The Annals of Regional Science, Springer, vol. 40(4), pages 803-817, December.
  4. Douglas Holtz-Eakin & Amy Schwartz, 1995. "Spatial productivity spillovers from public infrastructure: Evidence from state highways," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 2(3), pages 459-468, October.
  5. Alfredo M. Pereira & Martin B. Schmidt, 2007. "Structural Breaks in Public Infrastructure Investment in the U.S," Working Papers 55, Department of Economics, College of William and Mary.
  6. Evans, Paul & Karras, Georgios, 1994. "Is government capital productive? Evidence from a panel of seven countries," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 16(2), pages 271-279.
  7. Kevin T. Duffy-Deno & Randall W. Eberts, 1989. "Public infrastructure and regional economic development: a simultaneous equations approach," Working Paper 8909, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
  8. Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum & Charles L. Evans, 1998. "Monetary Policy Shocks: What Have We Learned and to What End?," NBER Working Papers 6400, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Haughwout, Andrew F., 2002. "Public infrastructure investments, productivity and welfare in fixed geographic areas," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(3), pages 405-428, March.
  10. Alicia H. Munnell, 1990. "Why has productivity growth declined? Productivity and public investment," New England Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, issue Jan, pages 3-22.
  11. Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum & Charles Evans, 1994. "The effects of monetary policy shocks: evidence from the flow of funds," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, issue Apr.
  12. Pereira, Alfredo M. & de Frutos, Rafael Flores, 1999. "Public Capital Accumulation and Private Sector Performance," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(2), pages 300-322, September.
  13. Alicia H. Munnell, 1990. "How does public infrastructure affect regional economic performance?," Conference Series ; [Proceedings], Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, vol. 34, pages 69-112.
  14. David Aschauer, 1988. "Is public expenditure productive?," Staff Memoranda 88-7, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  15. Evans, Paul & Karras, Georgios, 1994. "Are Government Activities Productive? Evidence from a Panel of U.S. States," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 76(1), pages 1-11, February.
  16. Berndt, Ernst & Hansson, Bengt, 1992. "Measuring the Contribution of Capital in Sweden," Working Paper Series 365, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
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  20. Shah, Anwar, 1992. "Dynamics of Public Infrastructure, Industrial Productivity and Profitability," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 74(1), pages 28-36, February.
  21. repec:fth:coluec:394 is not listed on IDEAS
  22. Seitz, Helmut, 1994. "Public capital and the demand for private inputs," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(2), pages 287-307, June.
  23. Alicia H. Munnell, 1992. "Policy Watch: Infrastructure Investment and Economic Growth," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 6(4), pages 189-198, Fall.
  24. Berndt, Ernst R & Hansson, Bengt, 1992. " Measuring the Contribution of Public Infrastructure Capital in Sweden," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 94(0), pages S151-68, Supplemen.
  25. John A. Tatom, 1991. "Public capital and private sector performance," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue May, pages 3-15.
  26. Glenn D. Rudebusch, 1996. "Do measures of monetary policy in a VAR make sense?," Working Papers in Applied Economic Theory 96-05, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  27. Hulten, Charles R. & Schwab, Robert M., 1993. "Infrastructure Spending: Where Do We Go From Here?," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 46(3), pages 261-73, September.
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