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Can Fiscal Policy Stimulus Boost Economic Recovery?


  • Luca Agnello
  • Ricardo M. Sousa


We assess the role played by fiscal policy in explaining the dynamics of asset markets. Using a panel of ten industrialized countries, we show that a positive fiscal shock has a negative impact in both stock and housing prices. However, while stock prices immediately adjust to the shock and the effect of fiscal policy is temporary, housing prices gradually and persistently fall. Consequently, the attempts of fiscal policy to mitigate stock price developments (e.g. via taxes on capital gains) may severely de-stabilize housing markets. The empirical findings also point to significant fiscal multiplier effects in the context of severe housing busts, which gives rise to the importance of the implementation of fiscal stimulus packages. In addition, our results suggest that when governments run a budget deficit, they place an upward pressure on real interest rates, which “crowds-out” private consumption and investment. In contrast, during bust periods, unexpected variation in the fiscal stance “ crowds-in” private spending, which reflects the “direct” and “indirect” effects of policy actions’ impact arising from a downward movement in real interest rates and an upward revision in price level expectations.

Suggested Citation

  • Luca Agnello & Ricardo M. Sousa, 2011. "Can Fiscal Policy Stimulus Boost Economic Recovery?," Revue économique, Presses de Sciences-Po, vol. 62(6), pages 1045-1066.
  • Handle: RePEc:cai:recosp:reco_626_1045

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Vitor Castro, 2015. "The Portuguese business cycle: chronology and duration dependence," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 49(1), pages 325-342, August.
    2. Agnello, Luca & Castro, Vítor & Sousa, Ricardo M., 2012. "How does fiscal policy react to wealth composition and asset prices?," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 34(3), pages 874-890.
    3. Jawadi, Fredj & Mallick, Sushanta K. & Sousa, Ricardo M., 2016. "Fiscal and monetary policies in the BRICS: A panel VAR approach," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 58(C), pages 535-542.
    4. Agnello, Luca & Schuknecht, Ludger, 2011. "Booms and busts in housing markets: Determinants and implications," Journal of Housing Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(3), pages 171-190, September.
    5. Agnello, Luca & Furceri, Davide & Sousa, Ricardo M., 2013. "How best to measure discretionary fiscal policy? Assessing its impact on private spending," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 15-24.
    6. Castroa, Vitor & Kubota, Megumi, 2013. "Duration dependence and change-points in the likelihood of credit booms ending," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6475, The World Bank.
    7. Fredj Jawadi & Ricardo M. Sousa, 2013. "Structural breaks and nonlinearity in US and UK public debts," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 20(7), pages 653-657, May.
    8. 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.
    9. Agnello, Luca & Dufrénot, Gilles & Sousa, Ricardo M., 2013. "Using time-varying transition probabilities in Markov switching processes to adjust US fiscal policy for asset prices," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 25-36.
    10. Athanasios O. Tagkalakis, 2013. "The output effects of systematic and non-systematic fiscal policy changes in Greece," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 33(3), pages 1816-1831.
    11. Goodness C. Aye & Rangan Gupta & Mampho P. Modise, 2015. "Do Stock Prices Impact Consumption and Interest Rate in South Africa? Evidence from a Time-varying Vector Autoregressive Model," Journal of Emerging Market Finance, Institute for Financial Management and Research, vol. 14(2), pages 176-196, August.
    12. repec:pal:assmgt:v:18:y:2017:i:2:d:10.1057_s41260-016-0009-4 is not listed on IDEAS
    13. Gnegne, Yacouba & Jawadi, Fredj, 2013. "Boundedness and nonlinearities in public debt dynamics: A TAR assessment," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 154-160.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy
    • H30 - Public Economics - - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents - - - General


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