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Military Spending and Inequality: Panel Granger Causality Test

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  • Eric S. Lin

    (Department of Economics, National Tsing Hua University, slin@mx.nthu.edu.tw)

  • Hamid E. Ali

    (Department of Management, American University in Cairo)

Abstract

The relationship between military spending and economic inequality is not well documented within the empirical literature, while numerous studies have uncovered the linkages between military spending and other macroeconomic variables, such as economic growth, unemployment, purchasing power parity, black market premium, poverty and investment. The purpose of this article is to examine the causal relationship between military spending and inequality using BVC and SIPRI data across 58 countries from 1987 to 1999. Panel unit root tests indicate that two inequality measures (Theil and EHII) under consideration are likely to be non-stationary. The authors’ work addresses the adverse implications of modeling with non-stationary variables, since this omission casts serious doubt on the reliability of the relationship between military spending and inequality. The recently developed panel Granger non-causality tests provide no evidence to support the causal relationship in either direction between the military spending and the change in economic inequality. The results are consistently robust to alternative data sources for military spending, to alternative definitions of the inequality measures, to the log transformation of the military spending, to the deletion of some data points, and to the division of OECD and non-OECD countries. Finally, the impulse responses and variance decompositions based on the panel vector autoregressive regression model are consistent with the findings from Granger non-causality tests.

Suggested Citation

  • Eric S. Lin & Hamid E. Ali, 2009. "Military Spending and Inequality: Panel Granger Causality Test," Journal of Peace Research, Peace Research Institute Oslo, vol. 46(5), pages 671-685, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:joupea:v:46:y:2009:i:5:p:671-685
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    JEL classification:

    • D30 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - General
    • H56 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - National Security and War

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