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The effects of fiscal policy in Italy: Evidence from a VAR model

  • Giordano, Raffaela
  • Momigliano, Sandro
  • Neri, Stefano
  • Perotti, Roberto

This paper studies the effects of fiscal policy on private GDP, inflation and the long-term interest rate in Italy using a structural vector autoregression model. To this end, a database of quarterly cash data for selected fiscal variables for the period 1982:1-2004:4 is constructed, largely relying on the information contained in the Italian Treasury Quarterly Reports. The main results of the study can be summarized as follows. A shock to government purchases of goods and services has a sizeable and robust effect on economic activity: an exogenous one per cent (in terms of private GDP) shock increases private real GDP by 0.6 per cent after 3 quarters. The response goes to zero after two years, reflecting with a lag the low persistence of the shock. The effects on employment, private consumption and investment are also positive. The response of inflation is positive but small and short-lived. In contrast, public wages, which in many studies are lumped together with purchases, have no significant effect on output, while the effects on employment turn negative after two quarters. Shocks to net revenue have negligible effects on all the variables.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal European Journal of Political Economy.

Volume (Year): 23 (2007)
Issue (Month): 3 (September)
Pages: 707-733

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Handle: RePEc:eee:poleco:v:23:y:2007:i:3:p:707-733
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505544

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  1. Mountford, A.W. & Uhlig, H.F.H.V.S., 2002. "What are the Effects of Fiscal Policy Shocks?," Discussion Paper 2002-31, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  2. Andrew Mountford & Harald Uhlig, 2008. "What are the Effects of Fiscal Policy Shocks?," NBER Working Papers 14551, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Sims, Christopher A, 1980. "Macroeconomics and Reality," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(1), pages 1-48, January.
  4. James H. Stock & Mark W. Watson, 2001. "Vector Autoregressions," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(4), pages 101-115, Fall.
  5. Mark Mink & Jakob de Haan, 2005. "Has the Stability and Growth Pact Impeded Political Budget Cycles in the European Union?," CESifo Working Paper Series 1532, CESifo Group Munich.
  6. Lütkepohl, Helmut & Saikkonen, Pentti & Trenkler, Carsten, 2000. "Maximum eigenvalue versus trace tests for the cointegrating rank of a VAR process," SFB 373 Discussion Papers 2000,83, Humboldt University of Berlin, Interdisciplinary Research Project 373: Quantification and Simulation of Economic Processes.
  7. Yann Algan & Pierre Cahuc & André Zylberberg, 2002. "Public employment and labor market performances," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) halshs-00256207, HAL.
  8. Wendy Edelberg & Martin Eichenbaum & Jonas D.M. Fisher, 1998. "Understanding the Effects of a Shock to Government Purchases," NBER Working Papers 6737, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Christopher A. Sims & Tao Zha, 1995. "Error bands for impulse responses," Working Paper 95-6, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
  10. jerome henry & sandro momigliano & pablo hernandez de cos, 2005. "The short-term impact of government budgets on prices Evidence from macroeconometric models," Macroeconomics 0501020, EconWPA.
  11. Jörn Tenhofen & Guntram B. Wolff & Kirsten H. Heppke-Falk, 2010. "The Macroeconomic Effects of Exogenous Fiscal Policy Shocks in Germany: A Disaggregated SVAR Analysis," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), Justus-Liebig University Giessen, Department of Statistics and Economics, vol. 230(3), pages 328-355, June.
  12. Roberto Perotti, 2002. "Estimating the effects of fiscal policy in OECD countries," Economics Working Papers 015, European Network of Economic Policy Research Institutes.
  13. Olivier Blanchard & Roberto Perotti, 2002. "An Empirical Characterization Of The Dynamic Effects Of Changes In Government Spending And Taxes On Output," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 117(4), pages 1329-1368, November.
  14. Selma Mahfouz & Richard Hemming & Michael Kell, 2002. "The Effectiveness of Fiscal Policy in Stimulating Economic Activity; A Review of the Literature," IMF Working Papers 02/208, International Monetary Fund.
  15. repec:dgr:kubcen:200231 is not listed on IDEAS
  16. Francisco de Castro & Pablo Hernández de Cos, 2006. "The economic effects of exogenous fiscal shocks in Spain: a SVAR approach," Banco de Espa�a Working Papers 0604, Banco de Espa�a.
  17. Ramey, Valerie A. & Shapiro, Matthew D., 1998. "Costly capital reallocation and the effects of government spending," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 145-194, June.
  18. Fatás, Antonio & Mihov, Ilian, 2001. "The Effects of Fiscal Policy on Consumption and Employment: Theory and Evidence," CEPR Discussion Papers 2760, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  19. Sims, Christopher A & Stock, James H & Watson, Mark W, 1990. "Inference in Linear Time Series Models with Some Unit Roots," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 58(1), pages 113-44, January.
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