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Early warning or just wise after the event? The problem of using cyclically adjusted budget deficits for fiscal surveillance

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  • Andrew Hughes Hallett

    ()

  • Rasmus Kattai

    ()

  • John Lewis

    ()

Abstract

The effectiveness of cyclically adjusted balances (CABs) as an indicator of the health of public finances depends on the accuracy with which cyclically adjusted figures can be calculated in real time. This paper measures the accuracy of such figures using a specially constructed real time dataset containing published values of deficits, output gaps and cyclically adjusted deficits from successive issues of OECD economic outlook. We find that data revisions are so great that real-time CABs have low power in detecting fiscal slippages as defined by the ex post data.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Bank of Estonia in its series Bank of Estonia Working Papers with number 2007-02.

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Date of creation: 09 Feb 2007
Date of revision: 09 Feb 2007
Handle: RePEc:eea:boewps:wp2007-02

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Keywords: fiscal surveillance; cyclically adjusted budget balance; real time data;

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References

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  1. St-Amant, P. & van Norden, S., 1997. "Measurement of the Output Gap: A Discussion of Recent Research at the Bank of Canada," Technical Reports 79, Bank of Canada.
  2. Jakob de Haan & Helge Berger & David-Jan Jansen, 2003. "The End of the Stability and Growth Pact?," CESifo Working Paper Series 1093, CESifo Group Munich.
  3. Giavazzi, Francesco & Jappelli, Tullio & Pagano, Marco, 2000. "Searching for Non-Linear Effects of Fiscal Policy: Evidence from Industrial and Developing Countries," CEPR Discussion Papers 2374, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Buti, M. & Eijffinger, S.C.W. & Franco, D., 2003. "Revisiting the Stability and Growth Pact: Grand Design or Internal Adjustment?," Open Access publications from Tilburg University urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-176184, Tilburg University.
  5. Lorenzo Forni & Sandro Momigliano, 2004. "Cyclical sensitivity of fiscal policies based on real-time data," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 540, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  6. Athanasios Orphanides, 1998. "Monetary policy rules based on real-time data," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 1998-03, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  7. Giuliodori, Massimo & Beetsma, Roel, 2008. "On the relationship between fiscal plans in the European Union: An empirical analysis based on real-time data," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(2), pages 221-242, June.
  8. Alain Guay & Pierre St-Amant, 1997. "Do the Hodrick-Prescott and Baxter-King Filters Provide a Good Approximation of Business Cycles?," Cahiers de recherche CREFE / CREFE Working Papers 53, CREFE, Université du Québec à Montréal.
  9. de Haan, Jakob & Berger, Helge & Jansen, David-Jan, 2003. "The end of stability and growth pact?," Discussion Papers 2003/16, Free University Berlin, School of Business & Economics.
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Cited by:
  1. Giuliodori, Massimo & Beetsma, Roel, 2008. "On the relationship between fiscal plans in the European Union: An empirical analysis based on real-time data," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(2), pages 221-242, June.
  2. Cepparulo, Alessandra & Gastaldi, Francesca & Giuriato, Luisa & Sacchi, Agnese, 2011. "Budgeting versus implementing fiscal policy:the Italian case," MPRA Paper 32474, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  3. Andrew Hughes Hallett & Rasmus Kattai & John Lewis, 2009. "Can we rely on real time figures for cyclically adjusted budget balances?," Bank of Estonia Working Papers 2009-2, Bank of Estonia, revised 20 Oct 2009.

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