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An International Comparison of Success Factors for Budget Consolidation Strategies


  • Hans Pitlik


  • Norbert Gruber


  • Ewald Walterskirchen



In numerous countries the global financial and economic crisis has entailed a surge of government debt, which will call for enhanced consolidation efforts in the future. In the past consolidation strategies focusing primarily on spending cuts proved sustainable, whereas mostly revenue-based strategies were less successful. A suitable institutional framework, e.g., budgetary expenditure ceilings, also contributes to a lasting fiscal consolidation. The short-term growth effects of budget balancing efforts are more disputed. Besides contractionary ("Keynesian") effects empirical studies also find expanisionary ("non-Keynesian") effects of ambitious consolidation programmes under certain conditions.

Suggested Citation

  • Hans Pitlik & Norbert Gruber & Ewald Walterskirchen, 2010. "An International Comparison of Success Factors for Budget Consolidation Strategies," Austrian Economic Quarterly, WIFO, vol. 15(2), pages 198-210, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:wfo:wquart:y:2010:i:2:p:198-210

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. von Hagen, Jurgen & Hughes Hallett, Andrew & Strauch, Rolf, 2002. "Budgetary Consolidation in Europe: Quality, Economic Conditions, and Persistence," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 16(4), pages 512-535, December.
    2. Andrea Zaghini, 1999. "The economyc policy of fiscal consolidations: The european experience," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 355, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
    3. Heylen, Freddy & Everaert, Gerdie, 2000. "Success and Failure of Fiscal Consolidation in the OECD: A Multivariate Analysis," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 105(1-2), pages 103-124, October.
    4. Sebastian Hauptmeier & Martin Heipertz & Ludger Schuknecht, 2007. "Expenditure Reform in Industrialised Countries: A Case-Study Approach," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 28(3), pages 293-342, September.
    5. Gabriele Giudice & Alessandro Turrini & Jan in 't Veld, 2003. "Can fiscal consolidations be expansionary in the EU? Ex-post evidence and ex-ante analysis," European Economy - Economic Papers 2008 - 2015 195, Directorate General Economic and Financial Affairs (DG ECFIN), European Commission.
    6. von Hagen, Jurgen & Strauch, Rolf R, 2001. "Fiscal Consolidations: Quality, Economic Conditions, and Success," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 109(3-4), pages 327-346, December.
    7. Ewald Walterskirchen, 1987. "Budgetsanierung in einigen westeuropäischen Ländern," WIFO Monatsberichte (monthly reports), WIFO, vol. 60(7), pages 454-463, July.
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