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Reform of the Stability and Growth Pact: Reducing or Increasing the Nuisance?

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Abstract

This paper aims at providing a quantitative assessment of different proposals for reforming the Stability and Growth Pact by extending a counterfactual experiment performed in Eichengreen and Wyplosz (1998). Using estimated coefficients from a reduced form model, we simulate the path of the output gap for the largest Euro zone countries (France, Germany, Italy) after imposing limits to structural deficit according to different fiscal rules (structural deficit rules, golden rules and rules that incorporate the stock of debt). For each of these countries we can rank the different reform proposals in terms of output loss over the period considered. Our analysis has the merit of using a uniform method and hence allow a comparison across countries and across rules. The main results of the experiment, which emerge robustly, are (a), that the golden rule would be the most beneficial both using individual country's criteria and global criteria; and (b) that the status quo, the Maastricht rule, is less restrictive than many currently debated alternatives.

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Paper provided by Observatoire Francais des Conjonctures Economiques (OFCE) in its series Documents de Travail de l'OFCE with number 2005-01.

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Date of creation: 2005
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Handle: RePEc:fce:doctra:0501

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Keywords: Stability Pact; Golden Rule; European Union; Institutional Reform; Fiscal Rules;

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References

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  1. Jordi Gali & Roberto Perotti, 2003. "Fiscal Policy and Monetary Integration in Europe," NBER Working Papers 9773, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. 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:12-152958, Tilburg University.
  3. Lars Calmfors & Giancarlo Corsetti, 2003. "How to Reform Europe’s Fiscal Policy Framework," World Economics, World Economics, Economic & Financial Publishing, 1 Ivory Square, Plantation Wharf, London, United Kingdom, SW11 3UE, vol. 4(1), pages 109-116, January.
  4. Barry Eichengreen & Charles Wyplosz, 1998. "The Stability Pact: more than a minor nuisance?," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 13(26), pages 65-113, 04.
  5. Corsetti, Giancarlo & Devereux, Michael P. & Guiso, Luigi & Hassler, John & Saint-Paul, Gilles & Sinn, Hans-Werner & Sturm, Jan-Egbert & Vives, Xavier, 2010. "The European economy," Munich Reprints in Economics 20104, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  6. Francesco Saraceno & Paola Monperrus-Veroni, 2004. "A Simple Proposal for a 'Debt-Sensitive Stability Pact'," Macroeconomics 0406001, EconWPA.
  7. Willem H. Buiter & Clemens Grafe, 2004. "Patching up the Pact," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 12(1), pages 67-102, 03.
  8. Blanchard, Olivier J & Giavazzi, Francesco, 2004. "Improving the SGP Through a Proper Accounting of Public Investment," CEPR Discussion Papers 4220, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. Jerome Creel, 2003. "Ranking Fiscal Policy Rules: the Golden Rule of Public Finance vs. the Stability and Growth Pact," Documents de Travail de l'OFCE 2003-04, Observatoire Francais des Conjonctures Economiques (OFCE).
  10. George Kopits & Steven A. Symansky, 1998. "Fiscal Policy Rules," IMF Occasional Papers 162, International Monetary Fund.
  11. Buti, Marco & Sapir, André, 2001. "EMU in the Early Years: Differences and Credibility," CEPR Discussion Papers 2832, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  12. Marco Buti & Gabriele Giudice, 2002. "Maastricht's Fiscal Rules at Ten: An Assessment," Journal of Common Market Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 40(5), pages 823-848, December.
  13. André Sapir & Marco Buti, 2002. "EMU and economic policy in Europe: the challenge of the early years," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/8072, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
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Cited by:
  1. Jerome Creel & Paul Hubert & Francesco Saraceno, 2012. "An assessment of Stability and Growth Pact Reform Proposals in a Small-Scale Macro Framework," Documents de Travail de l'OFCE 2012-04, Observatoire Francais des Conjonctures Economiques (OFCE).
  2. Jérôme Creel & Paul Hubert & Francesco Saraceno, 2013. "Assessing future sustainability of french public finances," Sciences Po publications 2013-11, Sciences Po.
  3. Jerome Creel & Francesco Saraceno, 2008. "Automatic Stabilisation, Discretionary Policy and the Stability Pact," Documents de Travail de l'OFCE 2008-15, Observatoire Francais des Conjonctures Economiques (OFCE).
  4. Creel, Jérôme & Hubert, Paul & Saraceno, Francesco, 2012. "The European Fiscal Compact: A Counterfactual Assessment," Journal of Economic Integration, Center for Economic Integration, Sejong University, vol. 27, pages 537-563.

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