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Interstate risk sharing in Germany: 1970--2006

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  • Ralf Hepp
  • Jürgen von Hagen

Abstract

We study the channels of interstate risk sharing in Germany for the time period 1970 to 2006, estimating the degrees of smoothing of a shock to a state's gross domestic product by factor markets, the government sector, and credit markets, respectively. Within the government sector, we pay special attention to Germany's fiscal equalization mechanism. For pre-unification Germany, we find that about 19% of a shock is smoothed by private factor markets, 50% is smoothed by the German government sector, and a further 17% is smoothed through credit markets. For the post-unification period, 1995 to 2006, the relative importance of the smoothing channels has changed. Factor markets contribute around 50.5% to consumption smoothing. The government sector's role is diminished, but still economically significant: it smoothes around 10% of a shock. Copyright 2013 Oxford University Press 2012 All rights reserved, Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Ralf Hepp & Jürgen von Hagen, 2013. "Interstate risk sharing in Germany: 1970--2006," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 65(1), pages 1-24, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:oxecpp:v:65:y:2013:i:1:p:1-24
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    JEL classification:

    • H77 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - Intergovernmental Relations; Federalism
    • E63 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Comparative or Joint Analysis of Fiscal and Monetary Policy; Stabilization; Treasury Policy
    • F42 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - International Policy Coordination and Transmission

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