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Fiscal Policy, Macroeconomic Stability And Finite Horizons

  • Javier Andrés
  • Rafael Doménech
  • Campbell Leith

In this paper we analyse the stabilisation properties of distortionary taxes in a New Keynesian model with overlapping generations of finitely-lived consumers. In this framework, government debt is part of net wealth and this adds a number of interesting channels through which fiscal policy could affect output and inflation. Output volatility, in presence of technology shocks, is not substantially affected by the operation of automatic stabilisers but we find interesting composition effects. While the presence of finitely-lived households strengthens the stabilisation performance of distortionary taxes through the reduction of the volatility of consumption, it does so at the cost of more volatile investment and real balances. These conflicting responses add up to a very small overall welfare losses associated with distortionary taxation.

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Article provided by Scottish Economic Society in its journal Scottish Journal of Political Economy.

Volume (Year): 53 (2006)
Issue (Month): 1 (02)
Pages: 72-89

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Handle: RePEc:bla:scotjp:v:53:y:2006:i:1:p:72-89
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  1. Martin Uribe & Stephanie Schmitt-Grohe, 2001. "Optimal fiscal and monetary policy under sticky prices," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Jun.
  2. Gali, Jordi, 1994. "Government size and macroeconomic stability," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 38(1), pages 117-132, January.
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  4. Stephanie Schmitt-Grohe & Martin Uribe, 1995. "Balanced-budget rules, distortionary taxes, and aggregate instability," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 95-44, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  5. Andres, Javier & Domenech, Rafael, 2006. "Automatic stabilizers, fiscal rules and macroeconomic stability," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 50(6), pages 1487-1506, August.
  6. Michael Woodford, 1996. "Control of the Public Debt: A Requirement for Price Stability?," NBER Working Papers 5684, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  8. Olivier Blanchard & Roberto Perotti, 1999. "An Empirical Characterization of the Dynamic Effects of Changes in Government Spending and Taxes on Output," NBER Working Papers 7269, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Jean-Pascal Benassy, 2003. "Fiscal Policy and Optimal Monetary Rules in a non Ricardian Economy," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 6(3), pages 498-512, July.
  10. Leeper, Eric M., 1991. "Equilibria under 'active' and 'passive' monetary and fiscal policies," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 129-147, February.
  11. Leith, Campbell & Wren-Lewis, Simon, 2000. "Interactions between Monetary and Fiscal Policy Rules," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 110(462), pages C93-108, March.
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