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A Longer-run Perspective on Fiscal Sustainability

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  • António Afonso
  • João Tovar Jalles

Abstract

This paper investigates the sustainability of fiscal policy in a set of 19 countries by taking a longer-run secular perspective over the period 1880-2009. Via a systematic analysis of the stationarity properties of the first-differenced level of government debt, and disentangling the components of the debt series using Structural Time Series Models, we are able to conclude that the solvency condition would be satisfied in mostly all cases since non-stationarity can be rejected, and, therefore, longer-run fiscal sustainability cannot be rejected (Japan and Spain can be exceptions). The same would be true for the panel sample analysis.

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File URL: http://pascal.iseg.utl.pt/~depeco/wp/wp172011.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by ISEG - School of Economics and Management, Department of Economics, University of Lisbon in its series Working Papers Department of Economics with number 2011/17.

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Date of creation: Aug 2011
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Handle: RePEc:ise:isegwp:wp172011

Contact details of provider:
Postal: Department of Economics, ISEG - School of Economics and Management, University of Lisbon, Rua do Quelhas 6, 1200-781 LISBON, PORTUGAL
Web page: https://aquila1.iseg.ulisboa.pt/aquila/departamentos/EC

Related research

Keywords: fiscal sustainability; government debt; unit roots; breaks; structural time series models Classification-C23; E62; H62;

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References

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  1. Afonso, António, 2006. "Expansionary fiscal consolidations in Europe: new evidence," Working Paper Series 0675, European Central Bank.
  2. Im, Kyung So & Pesaran, M. Hashem & Shin, Yongcheol, 2003. "Testing for unit roots in heterogeneous panels," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 115(1), pages 53-74, July.
  3. António Afonso, 2005. "Ricardian Fiscal Regimes in the European Union," Working Papers Department of Economics 2005/18, ISEG - School of Economics and Management, Department of Economics, University of Lisbon.
  4. Timothy Cogley & James M. Nason, 1993. "Effects of the Hodrick-Prescott filter on trend and difference stationary time series: implications for business cycle research," Working Papers in Applied Economic Theory 93-01, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  5. Harvey, Andrew & Scott, Andrew, 1994. "Seasonality in Dynamic Regression Models," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 104(427), pages 1324-45, November.
  6. Antonio Afonso, 2004. "Fiscal Sustainability: the Unpleasant European Case," Money Macro and Finance (MMF) Research Group Conference 2004 57, Money Macro and Finance Research Group.
  7. Bravo, Ana Bela Santos & Silvestre, Antonio Luis, 2002. "Intertemporal sustainability of fiscal policies: some tests for European countries," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 18(3), pages 517-528, September.
  8. Vogelsang, Timothy J & Perron, Pierre, 1998. "Additional Tests for a Unit Root Allowing for a Break in the Trend Function at an Unknown Time," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 39(4), pages 1073-1100, November.
  9. Makrydakis, S. & Tzavalis, E. & Balfoussias, A., 1996. "Policy Regime Changes and the Long-Run Sustainability of Fiscal Policy: An Application to Greece," Discussion Papers 9601, Exeter University, Department of Economics.
  10. Feve, Patrick & Henin, Pierre-Yves, 2000. " Assessing Effective Sustainability of Fiscal Policy within the G-7," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 62(2), pages 175-95, May.
  11. Arghyrou, Michael G. & Luintel, Kul B., 2007. "Government solvency: Revisiting some EMU countries," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 387-410, June.
  12. António Afonso & Christophe Rault, 2007. "What do we really know about fiscal sustainability in the EU? A panel data diagnostic," Working Papers hal-00322091, HAL.
  13. Pierre Perron & Tomoyoshi Yabu, 2005. "Testing for Shifts in Trend with an Integrated or Stationary Noise Component," Boston University - Department of Economics - Working Papers Series WP2005-026, Boston University - Department of Economics.
  14. International Monetary Fund, 2010. "A Historical Public Debt Database," IMF Working Papers 10/245, International Monetary Fund.
  15. Harvey, A C & Jaeger, A, 1993. "Detrending, Stylized Facts and the Business Cycle," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 8(3), pages 231-47, July-Sept.
  16. Hatemi-J, Abdulnasser, 2002. "Fiscal policy in Sweden: effects of EMU criteria convergence," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 19(1), pages 121-136, January.
  17. Clemente, Jesus & Montanes, Antonio & Reyes, Marcelo, 1998. "Testing for a unit root in variables with a double change in the mean," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 59(2), pages 175-182, May.
  18. Harvey, Andrew, 1997. "Trends, Cycles and Autoregressions," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 107(440), pages 192-201, January.
  19. Troy Matheson, 2011. "New Indicators for Tracking Growth in Real Time," IMF Working Papers 11/43, International Monetary Fund.
  20. Martin, G.M., 1998. "U.S. Deficit Sustainability: A New Approach Based on Multiple Endogenous Breaks," Monash Econometrics and Business Statistics Working Papers 1/98, Monash University, Department of Econometrics and Business Statistics.
  21. Maddala, G S & Wu, Shaowen, 1999. " A Comparative Study of Unit Root Tests with Panel Data and a New Simple Test," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 61(0), pages 631-52, Special I.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Afonso, António & Jalles, João Tovar, 2012. "Revisiting fiscal sustainability: panel cointegration and structural breaks in OECD countries," Working Paper Series 1465, European Central Bank.
  2. Niklas Potrafke & Markus Reischmann, 2012. "Fiscal Equalization Schemes and Fiscal Sustainability," CESifo Working Paper Series 3948, CESifo Group Munich.

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