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Boosting confidence: Is there a role for fiscal policy?

  • Konstantinou, Panagiotis
  • Tagkalakis, Athanasios

This paper investigates the widely held view that expansionary fiscal policy can boost consumer and business confidence, which will stimulate private spending and sustain economic activity. We find evidence in favor of this conjecture, i.e., cuts in direct taxes generate a positive effect on consumer and business confidence, while the same applies in cases of higher non-wage government consumption. However, higher government wage bills and government investment reduce confidence, with the effect being more pronounced when the Debt to GDP ratio is high, possibly because they entail a permanent increase in the size of the public sector, which would have to be financed by higher future taxes.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Economic Modelling.

Volume (Year): 28 (2011)
Issue (Month): 4 (July)
Pages: 1629-1641

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Handle: RePEc:eee:ecmode:v:28:y:2011:i:4:p:1629-1641
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/30411

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  13. BELTRAN, Helena & DURRE, Alain, 2003. "The determinants of consumer confidence: the case of United States and Belgium," CORE Discussion Papers 2003053, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
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  17. Tagkalakis, Athanasios, 2008. "The effects of fiscal policy on consumption in recessions and expansions," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(5-6), pages 1486-1508, June.
  18. E. Philip Howrey, 2001. "The Predictive Power of the Index of Consumer Sentiment," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 32(1), pages 175-216.
  19. Mark Doms & Norman Morin, 2004. "Consumer sentiment, the economy, and the news media," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2004-51, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
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