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Public Debt and Economic Growth: a Granger Causality Panel Data Approach

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  • António Afonso
  • Sebastian Hauptmeier
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    Abstract

    This paper analyses the Granger-causality relationship between the growth of the real GDP per capita and the public debt, here represented by the ratio of the current primary surplus/GDP and the ratio of the gross Government debt/GDP. Using OECD annual data for 20 countries between 1988 and 2001, we adapt the methodology recently applied by Erdil and Yetkiner (2008) and we conclude that there is clear Granger causality and that it is always bi-directional. In addition, our findings point to a heterogeneous behaviour across the different countries. These results have important policy implications since not only does public debt restrain economic growth, but also real GDP per capita growth influences the evolution of public debt. Key words: panel data; public debt and economic growth

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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 2009/24.

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    Date of creation: Apr 2009
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    Handle: RePEc:ise:isegwp:wp242009

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    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

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    1. Erkan Erdil & I. Hakan Yetkiner, 2009. "The Granger-causality between health care expenditure and output: a panel data approach," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 41(4), pages 511-518.
    2. Perotti, Roberto, 2002. "Estimating the effects of fiscal policy in OECD countries," Working Paper Series 0168, European Central Bank.
    3. Saint-Paul, G., 1991. "Fiscal Policy In An Endogenous Growth Model," DELTA Working Papers 91-04, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
    4. Andrea PRESBITERO, 2005. "The Debt-Growth Nexus: a Dynamic Panel Data Estimation," Working Papers 243, Universita' Politecnica delle Marche (I), Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche e Sociali.
    5. Schclarek, Alfredo, 2004. "Debt and Economic Growth in Developing and Industrial Countries," Working Papers 2005:34, Lund University, Department of Economics.
    6. Mehrotra, Aaron N. & Peltonen, Tuomas A., 2005. "Socio-economic development and fiscal policy: lessons from the cohesion countries for the new member states," Working Paper Series 0467, European Central Bank.
    7. Venet, Baptiste & Hurlin, Christophe, 2001. "Granger Causality Tests in Panel Data Models with Fixed Coefficients," Economics Papers from University Paris Dauphine 123456789/6159, Paris Dauphine University.
    8. Holtz-Eakin, Douglas & Newey, Whitney & Rosen, Harvey S, 1988. "Estimating Vector Autoregressions with Panel Data," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(6), pages 1371-95, November.
    9. Levin, Andrew & Lin, Chien-Fu & James Chu, Chia-Shang, 2002. "Unit root tests in panel data: asymptotic and finite-sample properties," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 108(1), pages 1-24, May.
    10. Konya, Laszlo, 2004. "Unit-Root, Cointegration and Granger Causality Test Results for Export and Growth in OECD Countries," International Journal of Applied Econometrics and Quantitative Studies, Euro-American Association of Economic Development, vol. 1(2), pages 67-94.
    11. Nair-Reichert, Usha & Weinhold, Diana, 2001. " Causality Tests for Cross-Country Panels: A New Look at FDI and Economic Growth in Developing Countries," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 63(2), pages 153-71, May.
    12. Hélène Poirson & Luca Antonio Ricci & Catherine A. Pattillo, 2004. "What Are the Channels Through Which External Debt Affects Growth?," IMF Working Papers 04/15, International Monetary Fund.
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