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Fiscal Consolidation Contrasting Strategies & Lessons from International Experience

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  • Joerg Bibow

    (University of Hamburg & The Levy Economics Institute)

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    Abstract

    Contrasting Strategies & Lessons From International Experiences Jörg Bibow* Abstract: This paper analyzes the issues of public finance sustainability and suitability of strategies aimed at fiscal consolidation. Contrasting growth-based versus thrift-based consolidation strategies, it is argued that in the light of theory only the former promises success in large economies. Empirically, this study investigates the experiences with consolidation over the 1990s in the U.S., Japan, and the eurozone while scrutinizing disparities in economic performance and consolidation within Europe. It is argued that experiences of individual European Union (EU) member states may not be applicable to the eurozone as a whole and that the U.S. may provide the only relevant example for guiding policymaking in the EMU. The U.S. example features cooperative macroeconomic policies geared at steering domestic demand growth, with sustainable public finances as a consequence of their success. By contrast, the Maastricht regime features a counterproductive mix of thrift-based consolidation and inflation-obsessed monetary policyCultimately a recipe for disaster. Reforms should focus on securing cooperation and proper growth orientation in macroeconomic policymaking, with discipline being imposed in a more balanced way on both finance ministers and central bankers.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by EconWPA in its series Macroeconomics with number 0402014.

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    Length: 53 pages
    Date of creation: 06 Feb 2004
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpma:0402014

    Note: Type of Document - pdf; pages: 53
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    Web page: http://128.118.178.162

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    Keywords: E61; E58; H62;

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    Cited by:
    1. Jorg Bibow, 2005. "Europe’s Quest for Monetary Stability: Central Banking Gone Astray," Macroeconomics 0508029, EconWPA.
    2. Jorg Bibow, 2005. "Europe's Quest for Monetary Stability: Central Banking Gone Astray," Economics Working Paper Archive wp_428, Levy Economics Institute.
    3. Jorg Bibow, 2005. "Bad for Euroland, Worse for Germany: The ECB's Record," Economics Working Paper Archive wp_429, Levy Economics Institute.
    4. Jorg Bibow, 2005. "Bad for Euroland, Worse for Germany-The ECB's Record," Macroeconomics 0511018, EconWPA.

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