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Reinventing Fiscal Policy

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  • Philip Arestis
  • Malcolm Sawyer

Abstract

Recent developments in macroeconomic policy, in terms of both theory and practice, have elevated monetary policy while downgrading fiscal policy. Monetary policy has focused on the setting of interest rates as the key policy instrument, along with the adoption of inflation targets and the use of monetary policy to target inflation. Elsewhere, we have critically examined the significance of this shift, which led us to question the effectiveness of monetary policy. We have also explored the role of fiscal policy and argued that it should be reinstated. This contribution aims to consider further that conclusion. We consider at length fiscal policy within the current "new consensus" theoretical framework. We find the proposition of this thinking, that fiscal policy provides at best a limited role, unconvincing. We examine the possibility of crowding out and the Ricardian Equivalence Theorem. A short review of quantitative estimates of fiscal policy multipliers gives credence to our theoretical conclusions. Our overall conclusion is that, under specified conditions, fiscal policy is a powerful tool for macroeconomic policy.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Levy Economics Institute, The in its series Economics Working Paper Archive with number wp_381.

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Date of creation: May 2003
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Handle: RePEc:lev:wrkpap:wp_381

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. 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).
  2. Canale Rosaria Rita & Foresti Pasquale & Marani Ugo & Napolitano Oreste, 2008. "On keynesian effects of (apparent) non-keynesian fiscal policies," Politica economica, Società editrice il Mulino, issue 1, pages 5-46.
  3. Jerome Creel & Gwenaelle Poilon, 2008. "Is public capital productive in Europe?," International Review of Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 22(6), pages 673-691.
  4. Jean-Paul Fitoussi & Francesco Saraceno, 2004. "The Brussels-Frankfurt-Washington Consensus. Old and New Tradeoffs in Economics," Documents de Travail de l'OFCE 2004-02, Observatoire Francais des Conjonctures Economiques (OFCE).
  5. Philip Arestis & Malcolm Sawyer, 2003. "The Case for Fiscal Policy," General Economics and Teaching 0306005, EconWPA.
  6. Fabrice Capoen & Jérôme Creel, 2007. "Efficiency of stability-oriented institutions: the European case," Sciences Po publications N°2007-06, Sciences Po.
  7. Eckhard Hein & Achim Truger, 2006. "Fiscal Policy and Macroeconomic Performance in the Euro area - Lessons for the Future," IMK Working Paper 07-2006, IMK at the Hans Boeckler Foundation, Macroeconomic Policy Institute.
  8. Angel Asensio, 2008. "(Post) Keynesian alternative to inflation targeting," Post-Print halshs-00335560, HAL.
  9. Makkonen, Teemu, 2013. "Government science and technology budgets in times of crisis," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 42(3), pages 817-822.
  10. John Weeks & Shruti Patel, 2007. "Fiscal Policy," Publications 1, International Policy Centre for Inclusive Growth.
  11. Eckhard Hein & Achim Truger, 2008. "Fiscal policy in the macroeconomic policy mix: A Critique of the New Consensus Model and a comparison of macroeconomic policies in France, Germany, the UK and Sweden from a Post-Keynesian perspective," IMK Working Paper 03-2008, IMK at the Hans Boeckler Foundation, Macroeconomic Policy Institute.
  12. Truger, Achim, 2013. "Austerity in the Euro area: The sad state of economic policy in Germany and the EU," IPE Working Papers 22/2013, Berlin School of Economics and Law, Institute for International Political Economy (IPE).
  13. Angel Asensio, 2005. "Monetary and budgetary-fiscal policy interactions in a Keynesian context: revisiting macroeconomic governance," Post-Print halshs-00139029, HAL.
  14. Eckhard Hein & Achim Truger, 2006. "Germany's post-2000 stagnation in the European context - a lesson in macroeconomic mismanagement," IMK Working Paper 03-2006, IMK at the Hans Boeckler Foundation, Macroeconomic Policy Institute.
  15. Jose Antonio Cordero, 2009. "Costa Rica During the Global Recession: Fiscal Stimulus with Tight Monetary Policy," CEPR Reports and Issue Briefs 2009-23, Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR).
  16. Alfredo Saad-Filho, 2007. "Life beyond the Washington Consensus: An Introduction to Pro-poor Macroeconomic Policies," Review of Political Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(4), pages 513-537.

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