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The Impact of the European Union Fiscal Rules on Economic Growth

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Abstract

This study intends to provide an empirical answer to the question of whether Maastricht and SGP fiscal rules have affected growth of European Union countries. A growth equation augment with fiscal variables and controlling for the period in which fiscal rules were implemented in Europe is estimated over a panel of 15 EU countries (and 8 OECD countries) for the period 1970-2005 with the purpose of answering this question. The equation is estimated using both a dynamic fixed effects estimator and a recently developed pooled mean group estimator. GMM estimators are also used in a robustness analysis. Empirical results show that growth of real GDP per capita in the EU was not negatively affected in the period after Maastricht. This is the case when the recent performance of EU countries is compared both with their past performance and with the performance of other developed countries. Results even show that growth is slightly higher in the period in which the fulfilment of the 3% criteria for the deficit started to be officially assessed. Therefore, this study concludes that the institutional changes that occurred in Europe after 1992, especially the implementation of Maastricht and Stability and Growth Pact fiscal rules, should not be blamed for being harmful to growth in Europe.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by NIPE - Universidade do Minho in its series NIPE Working Papers with number 10/2007.

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Date of creation: 2007
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Handle: RePEc:nip:nipewp:10/2007

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Postal: Núcleo de Investigação em Políticas Económicas, Escola de Economia e Gestão, Universidade do Minho, P-4710-057 Braga, Portugal
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Web page: http://www3.eeg.uminho.pt/economia/nipe/versao_inglesa/index_uk.htm
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Keywords: European Union; Economic Growth; Fiscal rules; Pooled mean group estimator;

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  1. Pedroni, Peter, 1999. " Critical Values for Cointegration Tests in Heterogeneous Panels with Multiple Regressors," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 61(0), pages 653-70, Special I.
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  3. Arestis, Philip & McCauley, Kevin & Sawyer, Malcolm, 2001. "An Alternative Stability Pact for the European Union," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 25(1), pages 113-30, January.
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  9. Castro, Vítor, 2007. "The Impact Of The European Union Fiscal Rules On Economic Growth," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 794, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
  10. Islam, Nazrul, 1995. "Growth Empirics: A Panel Data Approach," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 110(4), pages 1127-70, November.
  11. Galí, Jordi & Perotti, Roberto, 2003. "Fiscal Policy and Monetary Integration in Europe," CEPR Discussion Papers 3933, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  12. Blanchard, Olivier J & Giavazzi, Francesco, 2004. "Improving the SGP Through a Proper Accounting of Public Investment," CEPR Discussion Papers 4220, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  16. Thierry Warin, 2005. "The Hidden Structural Features of the Fiscal Rule: A European Saga," International Advances in Economic Research, Springer, vol. 11(1), pages 29-38, March.
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  18. Mankiw, N Gregory & Romer, David & Weil, David N, 1992. "A Contribution to the Empirics of Economic Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 107(2), pages 407-37, May.
  19. Soukiazis, Elias & Castro, Vitor, 2005. "How the Maastricht criteria and the Stability and Growth Pact affected real convergence in the European Union: A panel data analysis," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 385-399, April.
  20. von Hagen, Jürgen, 2003. "Fiscal discipline and growth in Euroland: Experiences with the stability and growth pact," ZEI Working Papers B 06-2003, ZEI - Center for European Integration Studies, University of Bonn.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Luca Agnello & Vítor Castro & Ricardo M. Sousa, 2012. "Are there change-points in the likelihood of a fiscal consolidation ending?," NIPE Working Papers 18/2012, NIPE - Universidade do Minho.
  2. Castro, Vítor, 2008. "The duration of economic expansions and recessions : More than duration dependence," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 860, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
  3. Zaenal Mutaqin & Masaru Ichihashi, 2012. "The Role of Maastricht Criteria and Membership in Determining Convergence in the Eurozone and ASEAN: A Panel Data Analysis," IDEC DP2 Series 2-7, Hiroshima University, Graduate School for International Development and Cooperation (IDEC).
  4. L, Agnello. & R, M. Sousa., 2012. "How does Fiscal Consolidation Impact on Income Inequality?," Working papers 382, Banque de France.
  5. Castro, Vitor, 2011. "The impact of the European Union fiscal rules on economic growth," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 313-326, June.

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