The Welfare State, Thresholds, and Economic Growth
AbstractCan a growing welfare state induce a regime switch in the growth rate of an econ-omy? This paper constructs a dynamic political economy model of economic growth and the welfare state in which both variables are non-linearly related and jointly en-dogenous. Using a Markov switching framework over the period 1950-2001, we find that the structural decline in growth rates that several welfare state economies expe-rienced during 1970-1975 are preceded by movements to a high welfare state regime. This suggests that expanding welfare state regimes are associated with low economic growth regimes, while contracting welfare state regimes are associated with high growth regimes. However, we also find that the structural decline in growth rates leads to a downward structural break in the welfare state for many welfare state economies. This suggests that declining growth regimes are associated with contracting welfare state regimes, as lower growth forces politicians to cut the size of the welfare state. We also report strong evidence that both expansion and contractions in the welfare state affects growth non-linearly. These results are able to characterize a predictable and general pattern of welfare state–growth evolution.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research in its series Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin with number 424.
Length: 53 p.
Date of creation: 2004
Date of revision:
Welfare state; Structural change; Regime switching models; Positive political economy; Endogenous growth;
Other versions of this item:
- Fic, Tatiana & Ghate, Chetan, 2005. "The welfare state, thresholds, and economic growth," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 22(3), pages 571-598, May.
- P16 - Economic Systems - - Capitalist Systems - - - Political Economy of Capitalism
- E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy
- O40 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - General
- C22 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Time-Series Models; Dynamic Quantile Regressions; Dynamic Treatment Effect Models &bull Diffusion Processes
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