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Sustainability of Public Debt and Budget Deficit: Panel cointegration analysis for the European Union Member countries

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Abstract

In this study, we analyse the sustainability of fiscal policy of EU member countries within the panel cointegration and error-correction frameworks. Unlike the previous empirical papers in this area, we apply the test for panel cointegration between the primary budget deficit and the public debt defined in GDP ratios. Based on the cointegration test results, we conclude that the fiscal policy is consistent with the intertemporal budget constraint, i.e., it is sustainable in the panel of fifteen EU member countries over the period from 1970 to 2004. Hence, we show that the fiscal balance exhibits a significant structural change in the year 1992, when we apply the Banerjee and Carrion-i-Silvestre (2006) test for a structural break in the panel cointegration relationship. In a next step, we search for the politico-economic factors which explain the variation in the sustainable fiscal balance among the European countries. We evidence that the European fiscal rules have a significant positive effect on the improvement of the fiscal position of the governments of the EU member countries.

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Paper provided by Department of Economics, Johannes Kepler University Linz, Austria in its series Economics working papers with number 2006-10.

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Date of creation: Jul 2006
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Handle: RePEc:jku:econwp:2006_10

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Keywords: Sustainability; Budget Deficit; Panel Cointegration; Structural Breaks; Panel error-correction method;

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Cited by:
  1. repec:ebl:ecbull:v:3:y:2007:i:63:p:1-9 is not listed on IDEAS
  2. Mark Holmes & Jesús Otero & Theodore Panagiotidis, 2010. "Are EU budget deficits stationary?," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 38(3), pages 767-778, June.
  3. Mark J. Holmes & Theodore Panagiotidis & Jesus Otero, 2008. "Are EU budgets stationary?," Discussion Paper Series 2008_07, Department of Economics, University of Macedonia, revised Sep 2008.
  4. Juan Carlos Cuestas & Karsten Steahr, 2011. "Fiscal shocks and budget balance persistence in the EU countries from Central and Eastern Europe," Working Papers 2011014, The University of Sheffield, Department of Economics, revised May 2011.
  5. Christophe Rault & António Afonso, 2007. "Should we care for structural breaks when assessing fiscal sustainability?," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 3(63), pages 1-9.
  6. Christophe Rault & Antonio Alfonso, 2007. "What do we really know about fiscal sustainability in the EU? A panel data diagnostic," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series wp893, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
  7. António Afonso & Christophe Rault, 2008. "3-Step Analysis of Public Finances Sustainability: the Case of the European Union," CESifo Working Paper Series 2393, CESifo Group Munich.
  8. Joseph P. Byrne & Norbert Fiess & Ronald MacDonald, 2008. "The Global Dimension to Fiscal Sustainability," Working Papers 2008_10, Business School - Economics, University of Glasgow.
  9. Talpos, Ioan & Dima, Bogdan & Mutascu, Mihai & Enache, Cosmin, 2009. "Empirical Evidencies for the Budget Deficits Co-Integration in the Old European Union Members: Are there any Interlinkages in Fiscal Policies?," MPRA Paper 12647, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  10. António Afonso & Christophe Rault, 2007. "What We Really Know about Fiscal Sustainability in the EU? A Panel Data Diagnostic," Working Papers Department of Economics 2007/20, ISEG - School of Economics and Management, Department of Economics, University of Lisbon.
  11. Baumöhl, Eduard & Výrost, Tomáš & Lyócsa, Štefan, 2011. "Are we able to capture the EU debt crisis? Evidence from PIIGGS countries in panel unit root framework," MPRA Paper 30334, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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