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The Effects of Fiscal Policy in New Zealand: Evidence from a VAR Model with Debt Constraints

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  • Oscar Parkyn
  • Tugrul Vehbi

    ()
    (The Treasury)

Abstract

This paper investigates the macroeconomic effects of fiscal policy in New Zealand using a structural Vector Autoregression (SVAR) model. The model is the five-variable structural vector autoregression (SVAR) framework proposed by Blanchard and Perotti (2005), further augmented to allow for the possibility that taxes, spending and interest rates might respond to the level of the debt over time. We examine the dynamic responses of output, inflation and the interest rate to changes in government spending and revenues and analyse the contribution of shocks to New Zealand’s business cycle for the period 1983:1-2010:2. We find that the effects of government expenditure shocks in New Zealand appear to be positive but small in the short-run at the cost of higher interest rates and lower output in the medium to long-run. The sign of the effects of tax policy changes are less clear cut, but again the effects on GDP appear similarly modest. Past fiscal policy is analysed through a historical decomposition of the shocks in the model. This suggests that discretionary fiscal policy has had a generally pro-cyclical impact on GDP over the last fifteen years, and a material impact on the real long-term interest rate. A fiscal expansion has a positive but limited impact on inflation.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by New Zealand Treasury in its series Treasury Working Paper Series with number 13/02.

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Length: 46
Date of creation: Jan 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:nzt:nztwps:13/02

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Keywords: Fiscal policy; business cycle fluctuations; vector autoregression; debt feedback;

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References

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  1. Alan J. Auerbach & Yuriy Gorodnichenko, 2012. "Fiscal Multipliers in Recession and Expansion," NBER Chapters, in: Fiscal Policy after the Financial Crisis, pages 63-98 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Mountford, Andrew & Uhlig, Harald, 2002. "What are the Effects of Fiscal Policy Shocks?," CEPR Discussion Papers 3338, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. de Castro, Francisco & Hernández de Cos, Pablo, 2008. "The economic effects of fiscal policy: The case of Spain," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 30(3), pages 1005-1028, September.
  4. Hess Chung & Eric Leeper, 2007. "What Has Financed Government Debt?," Caepr Working Papers 2007-015, Center for Applied Economics and Policy Research, Economics Department, Indiana University Bloomington.
  5. Carlo Favero & Francesco Giavazzi, 2007. "Debt and the Effects of Fiscal Policy," NBER Working Papers 12822, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Iris Claus & Aaron Gill & Boram Lee & Nathan McLellan, 2006. "An empirical investigation of fiscal policy in New Zealand," Treasury Working Paper Series 06/08, New Zealand Treasury.
  7. Francesco Caprioli & Sandro Momigliano, 2011. "The effects of fiscal shocks with debt-stabilizing budgetary policies in Italy," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 839, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  8. Raffaela Giordano & Sandro Momigliano & Stefano Neri & Roberto Perotti, 2008. "The effetcs of fiscal policy in Italy: Evidence from a VAR model," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 656, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  9. Gauti B. Eggertsson & Paul Krugman, 2012. "Debt, Deleveraging, and the Liquidity Trap: A Fisher-Minsky-Koo Approach," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 127(3), pages 1469-1513.
  10. Lally, Martin & Marsden, Alastair, 2004. "Tax-adjusted market risk premiums in New Zealand: 1931-2002," Pacific-Basin Finance Journal, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 291-310, June.
  11. Tang, Hsiao Chink & Liu, Philip & Cheung, Eddie C., 2013. "Changing impact of fiscal policy on selected ASEAN countries," Journal of Asian Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(C), pages 103-116.
  12. Christina D. Romer & David H. Romer, 2010. "The Macroeconomic Effects of Tax Changes: Estimates Based on a New Measure of Fiscal Shocks," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(3), pages 763-801, June.
  13. Sims, Christopher A & Stock, James H & Watson, Mark W, 1990. "Inference in Linear Time Series Models with Some Unit Roots," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 58(1), pages 113-44, January.
  14. Ethan Ilzetzki & Carlos A. Vegh, 2008. "Procyclical Fiscal Policy in Developing Countries: Truth or Fiction?," NBER Working Papers 14191, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Olivier Blanchard & Roberto Perotti, 2002. "An Empirical Characterization Of The Dynamic Effects Of Changes In Government Spending And Taxes On Output," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 117(4), pages 1329-1368, November.
  16. Caldara, Dario & Kamps, Christophe, 2008. "What are the effects of fiscal policy shocks? A VAR-based comparative analysis," Working Paper Series 0877, European Central Bank.
  17. A. R. Pagan & Douglas Laxton & Luis Catão, 2008. "Monetary Transmission in an Emerging Targeter," IMF Working Papers 08/191, International Monetary Fund.
  18. Anja Baum & Marcos Poplawski-Ribeiro & Anke Weber, 2012. "Fiscal Multipliers and the State of the Economy," IMF Working Papers 12/286, International Monetary Fund.
  19. Oscar Parkyn, 2010. "Estimating New Zealand's Structural Budget Balance," Treasury Working Paper Series 10/08, New Zealand Treasury.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Razzak, Weshah, 2013. "An Empirical Study of Sectoral-Level Capital Investments in New Zealand," MPRA Paper 52461, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  2. Jamie Murray, 2013. "Parameter Uncertainty and the Fiscal Multiplier," Treasury Working Paper Series 13/19, New Zealand Treasury.

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