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Time Consistency Of Optimal Fiscal Policy In An Endogenous Growth Model

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  • Begoa Domnguez Manzano

    (Universitat Autnoma de Barcelona)

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    Abstract

    The present paper analyses the time-consistency of optimal fiscal policies in a model with private capital and endogenous growth achieved via public capital. A benevolent government chooses both public spending and taxation plans in order to maximise the welfare of the representative individual. When a full-commitment technology is assumed, the optimal policy is obviously implementable. Nevertheless, in the absence of full-commitment, it is well known that the debt restructuring method cannot make the optimal fiscal policy time-consistent in economies with private capital. Under a zero-tax rate on capital income, we prove that debt restructuring can solve the time-inconsistency problem of fiscal policy. In order to compare this policy with the one under full-commitment, we use a numerical solution method for non-linear rational expectations models, in particular the eigenvalue-eigenvector decomposition method suggested by Novales et al. (1999), which in turn is based on Sims (1998). Both models are solved and surprisingly we find that the policy under debt-commitment is quite close to the full-commitment policy both in growth and in welfare terms.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Society for Computational Economics in its series Computing in Economics and Finance 2000 with number 69.

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    Date of creation: 05 Jul 2000
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    Handle: RePEc:sce:scecf0:69

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    Postal: CEF 2000, Departament d'Economia i Empresa, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Ramon Trias Fargas, 25,27, 08005, Barcelona, Spain
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    1. Lucas, Robert Jr. & Stokey, Nancy L., 1983. "Optimal fiscal and monetary policy in an economy without capital," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(1), pages 55-93.
    2. V.V. Chari & Lawrence J. Christiano & Patrick J. Kehoe, 1993. "Optimal fiscal policy in a business cycle model," Staff Report 160, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
    3. David Aschauer, 1988. "Is public expenditure productive?," Staff Memoranda 88-7, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
    4. Faig, Miquel, 1994. "Debt Restructuring and the Time Consistency of Optimal Policies," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 26(2), pages 171-81, May.
    5. Faig, Miquel, 1991. " Time Inconsistency, Capital Mobility and Debt Restructuring in a Small Open Economy," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 93(3), pages 447-55.
    6. Barro, Robert J., 1990. "Government Spending in a Simple Model of Endogeneous Growth," Scholarly Articles 3451296, Harvard University Department of Economics.
    7. Chamley, Christophe, 1986. "Optimal Taxation of Capital Income in General Equilibrium with Infinite Lives," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 54(3), pages 607-22, May.
    8. Zhu, Xiaodong, 1995. "Endogenous capital utilization, investor's effort, and optimal fiscal policy," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(3), pages 655-677, December.
    9. Persson, Mats & Persson, Torsten & Svensson, Lars E O, 1987. "Time Consistency of Fiscal and Monetary Policy," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(6), pages 1419-31, November.
    10. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1977. "Rules Rather Than Discretion: The Inconsistency of Optimal Plans," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 473-91, June.
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