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Public capital, asymmetric information, and economic growth

  • Wai-Hong Ho
  • Yong Wang

We investigate the provision of public capital in an endogenous growth model with asymmetric information. In a credit market with costly screening, we show that the equilibrium contracts are characterized by the self-selection of borrowers. Through identifying an additional adverse effect of taxation on growth, we show that the optimal tax rate in our model is smaller than the output elasticity of public capital. Therefore, our analysis justifies a more conservative tax policy in the presence of asymmetric information. Furthermore, our model suggests a number of implications that appear to be well supported by preliminary evidence in cross-country data.

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Article provided by Canadian Economics Association in its journal Canadian Journal of Economics.

Volume (Year): 38 (2005)
Issue (Month): 1 (February)
Pages: 57-80

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Handle: RePEc:cje:issued:v:38:y:2005:i:1:p:57-80
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  1. Kneller, Richard & Bleaney, Michael F. & Gemmell, Norman, 1999. "Fiscal policy and growth: evidence from OECD countries," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 74(2), pages 171-190, November.
  2. Barro, Robert J. & Sala-i-Martin, Xavier, 1992. "Public Finance in Models of Economic Growth," CEPR Discussion Papers 630, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Agell, Jonas & Lindh, Thomas & Ohlsson, Henry, 1997. "Growth and the public sector: A critical review essay," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 13(1), pages 33-52, February.
  4. Azariadis Costas & Smith Bruce D., 1993. "Adverse Selection in the Overlapping Generations Model: The Case of Pure Exchange," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 277-305, August.
  5. William Easterly & Sergio Rebelo, 1993. "Fiscal Policy and Economic Growth: An Empirical Investigation," NBER Working Papers 4499, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Shouyong Shi, 1996. "Asymmetric Information, Credit Rationing, and Economic Growth," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 29(3), pages 665-87, August.
  7. Beck, Thorsten & Levine, Ross & Loayza, Norman, 1999. "Finance and the sources of growth," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2057, The World Bank.
  8. Stokey, Nancy L & Rebelo, Sergio, 1995. "Growth Effects of Flat-Rate Taxes," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(3), pages 519-50, June.
  9. Wang, Cheng & Williamson, Steve, 1998. "Debt Contracts and Financial Intermediation with Costly Screening," Staff General Research Papers 5086, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  10. La Porta, Rafael & Lopez-de-Silanes, Florencio & Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W., 1998. "Law and Finance," Scholarly Articles 3451310, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  11. Robert G. King & Sergio Rebelo, 1990. "Public Policy and Economic Growth: Developing Neoclassical Implications," NBER Working Papers 3338, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Turnovsky, Stephen J. & Fisher, Walter H., 1995. "The composition of government expenditure and its consequences for macroeconomic performance," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 19(4), pages 747-786, May.
  13. Levine, Ross & Loayza, Norman & Beck, Thorsten, 2000. "Financial intermediation and growth: Causality and causes," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(1), pages 31-77, August.
  14. Azariadis, Costas & Smith, Bruce, 1999. "Adverse selection in a neoclassical growth model," The North American Journal of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 10(2), pages 339-361.
  15. Barro, R.J., 1988. "Government Spending In A Simple Model Of Endogenous Growth," RCER Working Papers 130, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
  16. Bose, Niloy & Cothren, Richard, 1997. "Asymmetric Information and Loan Contracts in a Neoclassical Growth Model," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 29(4), pages 423-39, November.
  17. repec:dgr:uvatin:20020028 is not listed on IDEAS
  18. Glomm, Gerhard & Ravikumar, B., 1997. "Productive government expenditures and long-run growth," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 183-204, January.
  19. repec:ner:tilbur:urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-3125519 is not listed on IDEAS
  20. Futagami, Koichi & Morita, Yuichi & Shibata, Akihisa, 1993. " Dynamic Analysis of an Endogenous Growth Model with Public Capital," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 95(4), pages 607-25, December.
  21. Bencivenga, V.R. & Smith, B.D., 1988. "Some Consequences Of Credit Rationing In An Endogenous Growth Model," RCER Working Papers 159, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
  22. Jones, Larry E & Manuelli, Rodolfo E & Rossi, Peter E, 1993. "Optimal Taxation in Models of Endogenous Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(3), pages 485-517, June.
  23. Bose, Niloy & Cothren, Richard, 1996. "Equilibrium loan contracts and endogenous growth in the presence of asymmetric information," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 363-376, October.
  24. Glomm, Gerhard & Ravikumar, B., 1994. "Public investment in infrastructure in a simple growth model," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 18(6), pages 1173-1187, November.
  25. repec:ner:tilbur:urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-3125520 is not listed on IDEAS
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