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The Political Economy of the Budget Surplus in the U.S

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  • Alberto Alesina

Abstract

Current surpluses in the U.S. have been achieved by a combination of a strong economy, low interest rates, and sharp cuts in defence spending. These surpluses follow a period (the eighties) of rather exceptional budget deficits. This paper investigates the origin, size, and expected future patterns of the U.S. budget balance. It discusses how different political forces may generate alternative fiscal scenarios for the U.S. in the next decade.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 7496.

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Date of creation: Jan 2000
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Publication status: Published as "The Political Economy of Fiscal Adjustments", Brookings Paper, Vol. 28, no. 1 (1998): 197-248.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:7496

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  1. Barro, Robert J., 1974. "Are Government Bonds Net Wealth?," Scholarly Articles 3451399, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  2. Auerbach, Alan J., 1997. "Quantifying the Current U.S. Fiscal Imbalance," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 50(3), pages 387-98, September.
  3. Barro, Robert J, 1979. "On the Determination of the Public Debt," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(5), pages 940-71, October.
  4. Nordhaus, William D, 1975. "The Political Business Cycle," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 42(2), pages 169-90, April.
  5. Peter A. Diamond (ed.), 1999. "Issues in Privatizing Social Security: Report of an Expert Panel of the National Academy of Social Insurance," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262041774, December.
  6. Tabellini, Guido & Alesina, Alberto, 1990. "A Positive Theory of Fiscal Deficits and Government Debt," Scholarly Articles 3612769, Harvard University Department of Economics.
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Cited by:
  1. Sèna Kimm Gnangnon, 2011. "The consequences of Fiscal Episodes in OECD Countries for Aid Supply," Working Papers halshs-00613161, HAL.
  2. Fabrizio Carmignani, 2001. "Political Data for Applied Political Economy Research," Working Papers 43, University of Milano-Bicocca, Department of Economics, revised Jul 2001.
  3. Fritz Breuss, 2001. "Towards a Political Economy of Zero Budgeting in Austria," Empirica, Springer, vol. 28(1), pages 41-67, March.

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