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National fiscal consolidations and regional inequality in Europe

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  • Luca Agnello
  • Giorgio Fazio
  • Ricardo M. Sousa

Abstract

Using annual data for 13 European countries over the period 1980–2008, we assess the impact of national fiscal consolidations on the income inequality of European regions. Regional dispersion increases in the outcome of consolidation episodes, particularly, when packages are more severe and implemented through spending cuts rather than tax rises. From a policy perspective, these findings suggest that fiscal consolidations driven by reductions in government spending can exacerbate regional disparities and may ultimately counteract the European policy efforts to promote territorial cohesion. Our results are robust to alternative inequality measures, the occurrence of crisis episodes and the exclusion of fiscal outliers.

Suggested Citation

  • Luca Agnello & Giorgio Fazio & Ricardo M. Sousa, 2016. "National fiscal consolidations and regional inequality in Europe," Cambridge Journal of Regions, Economy and Society, Cambridge Political Economy Society, vol. 9(1), pages 59-80.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:cjrecs:v:9:y:2016:i:1:p:59-80.
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Castro, Vítor, 2017. "The impact of fiscal consolidations on the functional components of government expenditures," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 60(C), pages 138-150.
    2. Gianluca Cafiso & Roberto Cellini, 2018. "How Much Binding Is the Bill?," CESifo Working Paper Series 7147, CESifo Group Munich.
    3. Philipp Heimberger, 2020. "The dynamic effects of fiscal consolidation episodes on income inequality: evidence for 17 OECD countries over 1978–2013," Empirica, Springer;Austrian Institute for Economic Research;Austrian Economic Association, vol. 47(1), pages 53-81, February.
    4. Li, Bin & Li, Tuo & Yu, Man & Chen, Bin, 2017. "Can equalization of public services narrow the regional disparities in China? A spatial econometrics approach," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 44(C), pages 67-78.
    5. Philipp Heimberger, 2018. "The Dynamic Effects of Fiscal Consolidation Episodes on Income Inequality," wiiw Working Papers 147, The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw.
    6. Murillo Huertas, Inés P. & Ramos, Raul & Simón, Hipólito, 2017. "Revisiting Interregional Wage Differentials: New Evidence from Spain with Matched Employer-Employee Data," IZA Discussion Papers 11122, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    7. Vítor Castro, 2018. "Functional components of public expenditure, fiscal consolidations, and economic activity," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 30(1), pages 124-150, March.
    8. Francesco Prota & Maria Jennifer Grisorio, 2018. "Public expenditure in time of crisis: are Italian policymakers choosing the right mix?," Economia Politica: Journal of Analytical and Institutional Economics, Springer;Fondazione Edison, vol. 35(2), pages 337-365, August.
    9. Philipp Heimberger, 2020. "The dynamic effects of fiscal consolidation episodes on income inequality: evidence for 17 OECD countries over 1978–2013," Empirica, Springer;Austrian Institute for Economic Research;Austrian Economic Association, vol. 47(1), pages 53-81, February.
    10. Vitor Castro, 2016. "On the behaviour of the functional components ofgovernment expenditures during fiscal consolidations," NIPE Working Papers 11/2016, NIPE - Universidade do Minho.
    11. Juan R. Cuadrado-Roura & Ron Martin & Andrés Rodríguez-Pose, 2016. "The economic crisis in Europe: urban and regional consequences," Cambridge Journal of Regions, Economy and Society, Cambridge Political Economy Society, vol. 9(1), pages 3-11.

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