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The Fiscal Forecasting Track Record of the European Commission and Portugal

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  • António Afonso
  • Jorge Silva

Abstract

This study aims at explaining the deviation between the budget balance ratio forecasts and the outcomes in the Portuguese official forecasts and in the European Commission (EC) vintage forecasts. Therefore, we used data from the EC for the period 1969-2011 and also the Portuguese official forecasts for 1977-2011. We explain the deviation of the budget balanceto- GDP through econometric estimations and present statistical decomposition about budget balance, revenue and spending-to-GDP deviations. The statistical significance of real GDP and inflation deviations reveals the effect of automatic stabilizers and the imperfect tax indexation system. The European panel reveals statistical significance (no significance) of investment (unemployment) deviations in the budget-to-GDP ratio. Countries with better fiscal rules seem to present favourable deviations (in the absence of fixed effects). In Portugal, there is evidence of unfavourable errors about the budget balance in nominal currency in most years, which has been offset (totally or partially) by a favourable nominal GDP effect deviation. JEL Classification: C23, E44, H68.

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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 2012/37.

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Date of creation: Oct 2012
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Handle: RePEc:ise:isegwp:wp372012

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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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Keywords: macro forecasts; fiscal forecasts; EU; Portugal.;

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References

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  1. Stephan, Andreas & Brück, Tilman, 2005. "Do Eurozone Countries Cheat with their Budget Deficit Forecasts?," Working Paper Series 2005,5, European University Viadrina Frankfurt (Oder), The Postgraduate Research Programme Capital Markets and Finance in the Enlarged Europe.
  2. Carlos Fonseca Marinheiro, 2010. "Fiscal sustainability and the accuracy of macroeconomic forecasts: do supranational forecasts rather than government forecasts make a difference?," GEMF Working Papers 2010-07, GEMF - Faculdade de Economia, Universidade de Coimbra.
  3. Antonio Afonso, 2010. "Long-term government bond yields and economic forecasts: evidence for the EU," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 17(15), pages 1437-1441.
  4. Álvaro Pina & Nuno Venes, 2007. "The Political Economy of EDP Fiscal Forecasts: An Empirical Assessment," Working Papers Department of Economics 2007/23, ISEG - School of Economics and Management, Department of Economics, University of Lisbon.
  5. Jürgen Hagen, 2010. "Sticking to fiscal plans: the role of institutions," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 144(3), pages 487-503, September.
  6. Rossana Merola & Javier J. Pérez, 2012. "Fiscal forecast errors: governments vs independent agencies?," Banco de Espa�a Working Papers 1233, Banco de Espa�a.
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Cited by:
  1. António Afonso & Rui Carvalho, 2014. "Revenue Forecast Errors in the European Union," Working Papers Department of Economics 2014/02, ISEG - School of Economics and Management, Department of Economics, University of Lisbon.
  2. Merola, Rossana & Pérez, Javier J., 2014. "Fiscal Forecast Errors: Governments Versus Independent Agencies?," Papers RB2014/1/1, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
  3. António Afonso, 2013. "Anatomy of a fiscal débacle: the case of Portugal," Working Papers Department of Economics 2013/01, ISEG - School of Economics and Management, Department of Economics, University of Lisbon.

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