Why Did Japan's Fiscal Condition Deteriorate Markedly in the 1990s?: Changes in the Political Environment and Fiscal Policy
By focusing on the changes that were taking place in the political environment the 1990s, this article tries to explain why Japan's fiscal condition deteriorated markedly during this decade. The analysis demonstrates that a substantial portion of the actual budget deficit can be understood as an appropriate reaction (tax smoothing) to the shocks that hit the economy during this period. However, it also suggests that the deficit was excessively large in comparison with the optimal level for tax smoothing, and that the deficit may have expanded due to noneconomic factors. A series of studies on the relationship between budget deficits and the political environment has shown that a shift to a coalition government and the weakening of a regime's political base may contribute to an increase in the budget deficit. A regression analysis examining the impact of political factors on Japan's "excess" budget deficit show that the cabinet's approval rating and the share of seats in the Lower House of the Diet (parliament) held by the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) are significantly and negatively correlated with that "excess" deficit. These results suggest that the large deficit in the 1990s was partly due to the shift to a coalition government and the weakening of the LDP's power base.
Volume (Year): 33 (2005)
Issue (Month): 1 (March)
|Contact details of provider:|| Web page: http://mesharpe.metapress.com/link.asp?target=journal&id=110911|
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Barro, Robert J., 1979.
"On the Determination of the Public Debt,"
3451400, Harvard University Department of Economics.
- Huang, Chao-Hsi & Lin, Kenneth S., 1993. "Deficits, government expenditures, and tax smoothing in the United States: 1929-1988," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 317-339, June.
- Alberto Alesina & Guido Tabellini, 1990.
"A Positive Theory of Fiscal Deficits and Government Debt,"
Review of Economic Studies,
Oxford University Press, vol. 57(3), pages 403-414.
- Tabellini, Guido & Alesina, Alberto, 1990. "A Positive Theory of Fiscal Deficits and Government Debt," Scholarly Articles 3612769, Harvard University Department of Economics.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:mes:jpneco:v:33:y:2005:i:1:p:6-22. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Chris Nguyen)The email address of this maintainer does not seem to be valid anymore. Please ask Chris Nguyen to update the entry or send us the correct email address
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.