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How much economic freedom is necessary for economic growth? Theory and evidence

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  • Morris Altman

    () (University of Saskatchewan)

Abstract

The hypothesis that economic freedom and related variables are significant determinants of real per capita income and growth is critically evaluated. Economic freedom is found necessary for higher levels of per capita income and growth largely in terms of threshold effects as opposed to persistent marginal effects. More economic freedom does not appear to yield higher levels of per capita income. And securing particular levels of economic freedom does not guarantee higher levels of per capita income or growth. Secure private property rights is found to be a most significant positive causal variable as is sound money, whereas moderate amounts of labor regulation and big government are not found to be bad for the economy. Also, good corporate governance, in addition to economic freedom, is of considerable import. Unlike most studies, traditional statistical methods are supplemented by graphical analysis in an effort to determine threshold values for economic freedom and its components.

Suggested Citation

  • Morris Altman, 2008. "How much economic freedom is necessary for economic growth? Theory and evidence," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 15(2), pages 1-20.
  • Handle: RePEc:ebl:ecbull:eb-07o10037
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Stephen T. Ziliak & Deirdre N. McCloskey, 2004. "Size Matters: The Standard Error of Regressions in the American Economic Review," Econ Journal Watch, Econ Journal Watch, vol. 1(2), pages 331-358, August.
    2. Altman, Morris, 2004. "Statistical significance, path dependency, and the culture of journal publication," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 33(5), pages 651-663, November.
    3. Leibenstein, Harvey, 1979. "A Branch of Economics is Missing: Micro-Micro Theory," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 17(2), pages 477-502, June.
    4. Dani Rodrik, 2007. "Introductiion to One Economics, Many Recipes: Globalization, Institutions, and Economic Growth," Introductory Chapters,in: One Economics, Many Recipes: Globalization, Institutions, and Economic Growth Princeton University Press.
    5. Davies, Antony & Quinlivan, Gary, 2006. "A panel data analysis of the impact of trade on human development," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 35(5), pages 868-876, October.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Czeglédi, Pál, 2009. "A tulajdonjogi biztonság szerepe a technológia elterjedésében
      [The role of property-law security in the spread of technology]
      ," Közgazdasági Szemle (Economic Review - monthly of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences), Közgazdasági Szemle Alapítvány (Economic Review Foundation), vol. 0(9), pages 790-813.
    2. Lin, Kun-Li & Doan, Anh Tuan & Doong, Shuh-Chyi, 2016. "Changes in ownership structure and bank efficiency in Asian developing countries: The role of financial freedom," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 43(C), pages 19-34.
    3. repec:spr:epolit:v:34:y:2017:i:2:d:10.1007_s40888-017-0063-5 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Chowdhury, M. Ashraful Ferdous & Haque, M. Mahmudul & Alhabshi, Syed Othman & Masih, Abul Mansur M., 2016. "Socioeconomic Development and Its Effect on Performance of Islamic Banks: Dynamic Panel Approaches," MPRA Paper 71888, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Tudorel ANDREI & Ani MATEI & Ion Gh. ROSCA, 2009. "The Corruption - An Economic and Social Analysis," Economics Books, The Economica Publishing House, edition 1, volume 1, number 03.
    6. Johan Graafland & Bart Compen, 2015. "Economic Freedom and Life Satisfaction: Mediation by Income per Capita and Generalized Trust," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 16(3), pages 789-810, June.
    7. Joshua Hall & Robert Lawson, 2008. "Theory and evidence on economic freedom and economic growth: A comment," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 15(18), pages 1-6.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    economic freedom;

    JEL classification:

    • O1 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development
    • B4 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - Economic Methodology

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