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Personal and regional redistribution through public finance in a federal setting

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  • Cont, Walter
  • Porto, Alberto

Abstract

Following a partial equilibrium approach, this paper studies the effect of fiscal policy on income distribution in Argentina, based on budget information corresponding to the year 2004. Specifically, it aims to provide an empirical answer to a set of questions related to the responsibility of different levels of government (national or provincial) in ensuring the equitable distribution of income; how this responsibility is accomplished in practice, when this function is shared among two or more levels of government; whether an incompatibility arises among the policies from different levels of government; and the effect of fiscal policy on personal and regional income distribution.The main results of the paper are summarized as follows. At the aggregate level, both national and provincial budgets have a redistributive impact on personal income distribution, through a combination of progressive expenditures and (slightly) regressive taxes. Regional redistribution depends on two fiscal tools: the national budget and the revenue sharing regime. The progressive effect of expenditures and taxes interacts with the geographical effect of the revenue-sharing and the national budget, reinforcing progressivity in net-receiving groups and creating a trade-off between progressivity and (negative) regional transfer in net-financing ones. Provincial budgets have more impact than the national budget, both being compatible in pursuing the redistributive goal.

Suggested Citation

  • Cont, Walter & Porto, Alberto, 2014. "Personal and regional redistribution through public finance in a federal setting," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 54(4), pages 563-578.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:quaeco:v:54:y:2014:i:4:p:563-578
    DOI: 10.1016/j.qref.2012.10.006
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    Cited by:

    1. Walter Cont & Alberto Porto, 2015. "Fiscal Policy and Income Distribution. Argentina 1995 – 2010," CEFIP, Working Papers 016, CEFIP, Universidad Nacional de La Plata.
    2. Alberto Porto & Atilio Elizagaray, 2011. "Regional Development, Regional Disparities and Public Policies in Argentina: A Long-run View," Chapters, in: Werner Baer & David Fleischer (ed.), The Economies of Argentina and Brazil, chapter 16, Edward Elgar Publishing.
    3. -, 2017. "Fiscal Panorama of Latin America and the Caribbean 2017: Mobilizing resources to finance sustainable development," Libros y Documentos Institucionales, Naciones Unidas Comisión Económica para América Latina y el Caribe (CEPAL), number 41047 edited by Eclac.

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    JEL classification:

    • H7 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations
    • I3 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty

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