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Simple fiscal policy rules for small open economies

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  • Kumhof, Michael
  • Laxton, Douglas

Abstract

This paper analyzes the scope for rules-based countercyclical fiscal policy in small open economies where a subset of households is liquidity-constrained. Relative to balanced budget rules, structural surplus rules significantly improve welfare. But they minimize fiscal instrument volatility rather than business cycle volatility. More aggressively countercyclical tax revenue gap rules (strong automatic stabilizers) increase welfare gains by around 50%, with only modest increases in fiscal instrument volatility. If liquidity-constrained households' labor income is independent of raw materials prices, the government should save excess raw materials revenue on their behalf. The best fiscal instruments are transfers, consumption and labor taxes.

Suggested Citation

  • Kumhof, Michael & Laxton, Douglas, 2013. "Simple fiscal policy rules for small open economies," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(1), pages 113-127.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:inecon:v:91:y:2013:i:1:p:113-127
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jinteco.2013.05.002
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    Cited by:

    1. López-Martín Bernabé & Leal-Ordoñez Julio C. & Martínez André, 2017. "Commodity Price Risk Management and Fiscal Policy in a Sovereign Default Model," Working Papers 2017-04, Banco de México.
    2. Barbara Annicchiarico & Fabio Dio & Francesco Felici, 2015. "Fiscal Devaluation Scenarios: A Quantitative Assessment for the Italian Economy," Open Economies Review, Springer, vol. 26(4), pages 731-785, September.
    3. Landon, Stuart & Smith, Constance, 2017. "Does the design of a fiscal rule matter for welfare?," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 63(C), pages 226-237.
    4. Stefan Hohberger & Lukas Vogel & Bernhard Herz, 2015. "The sectoral reallocation of government purchases as budgetary-neutral stabilisation tool: a model-based analysis," International Economics and Economic Policy, Springer, vol. 12(1), pages 59-74, March.
    5. Martha López, 2016. "Fiscal Multipliers, Oil Revenues and Balance Sheet Effects," Borradores de Economia 976, Banco de la Republica de Colombia.
    6. Reicher, Claire, 2014. "Systematic fiscal policy and macroeconomic performance: A critical overview of the literature," Economics - The Open-Access, Open-Assessment E-Journal, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW), vol. 8, pages 1-37.
    7. Snudden, Stephen, 2016. "Cyclical fiscal rules for oil-exporting countries," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 59(C), pages 473-483.

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