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Testing the Buchanan-Wagner Hypothesis: European Evidence from Panel Unit Root and Cointegration Tests


  • Christopoulos, Dimitris K
  • Tsionas, Efthymios G


According to the Buchanan-Wagner hypothesis, public deficits reduce the perceived price of public goods to the current generation of voters who, in turn, increase the demands for such social services. Several recent studies have attempted to test this proposition. In this paper, we apply modern time series techniques organized around panel unit root and panel cointegration to draw sharper conclusions from the short time series that are typically available. We find that there is a long run positive relationship between government spending and government deficits for each country individually, as well as for the panel as a whole. This provides support for the BW hypothesis. We also analyze the implications for the relative productivity performance of the public and private sector, the existence of scale economies in the provision of public services, as well as the extent of crowding out effects. Copyright 2003 by Kluwer Academic Publishers

Suggested Citation

  • Christopoulos, Dimitris K & Tsionas, Efthymios G, 2003. "Testing the Buchanan-Wagner Hypothesis: European Evidence from Panel Unit Root and Cointegration Tests," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 115(3-4), pages 439-453, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:pubcho:v:115:y:2003:i:3-4:p:439-53

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. James Alm & Abel Embaye, 2010. "Explaining The Growth Of Government Spending In South Africa," South African Journal of Economics, Economic Society of South Africa, vol. 78(2), pages 152-169, June.
    2. Polemis, Michael L. & Fotis, Panagiotis N., 2013. "Do gasoline prices respond asymmetrically in the euro zone area? Evidence from cointegrated panel data analysis," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 56(C), pages 425-433.

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