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Did Tax Policies mitigate US Business Cycles?

  • Jimborean, R.
  • Ferroni, F.

I study whether US Tax Policies affected economic volatility during the post World War II period. I employ a Real Business Cycle model with distorting taxation on household income and tax rules, and assume that taxes respond to the cyclical conditions of the economy. I estimate the deep parameters of the model using Bayesian techniques. My findings are; (a) fiscal policies display a strong countercyclical behavior, (b) help to reduce the cyclical and raw volatility of GDP, consumption, investment when the government can issue debt, and (c) unexpected changes in tax policies do not affect the volatility of the macroeconomic variables.

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File URL: http://www.banque-france.fr/uploads/tx_bdfdocumentstravail/DT296.pdf
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Paper provided by Banque de France in its series Working papers with number 296.

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Length: 41 pages
Date of creation: 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:bfr:banfra:296
Contact details of provider: Postal: Banque de France 31 Rue Croix des Petits Champs LABOLOG - 49-1404 75049 PARIS
Web page: http://www.banque-france.fr/

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  3. Fatás, Antonio & Mihov, Ilian, 2004. "The Macroeconomic Effects of Fiscal Rules in the US States," CEPR Discussion Papers 4372, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Blinder, Alan S. & Solow, Robert M., 1973. "Does fiscal policy matter?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 2(4), pages 319-337.
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  8. Christina D. Romer & David H. Romer, 1994. "What Ends Recessions?," NBER Working Papers 4765, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    • Christina D. Romer & David H. Romer, 1994. "What Ends Recessions?," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1994, Volume 9, pages 13-80 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. John Bailey Jones, 1999. "Has Fiscal Policy Helped Stabilize the Postwar U.S. Economy?," Discussion Papers 99-03, University at Albany, SUNY, Department of Economics.
  10. Fabio Canova & Luca Gambetti, 2003. "Structural changes in the US economy: is there a role for monetary policy?," Economics Working Papers 918, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Apr 2008.
  11. Frank Schorfheide, 2000. "Loss function-based evaluation of DSGE models," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 15(6), pages 645-670.
  12. McGrattan, Ellen R., 1994. "The macroeconomic effects of distortionary taxation," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(3), pages 573-601, June.
  13. V. V. Chari & Patrick J. Kehoe & Ellen R. McGrattan, 2007. "Business Cycle Accounting," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 75(3), pages 781-836, 05.
  14. Ferroni, Filippo, 2009. "Trend agnostic one step estimation of DSGE models," MPRA Paper 14550, University Library of Munich, Germany.
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  16. Perotti, Roberto, 2002. "Estimating the effects of fiscal policy in OECD countries," Working Paper Series 0168, European Central Bank.
  17. Alan J. Auerbach, 2009. "Implementing the New Fiscal Policy Activism," NBER Working Papers 14725, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. DeJong, David N. & Ingram, Beth F. & Whiteman, Charles H., 2000. "A Bayesian approach to dynamic macroeconomics," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 98(2), pages 203-223, October.
  19. Joines, Douglas H, 1981. "Estimates of Effective Marginal Tax Rates on Factor Incomes," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 54(2), pages 191-226, April.
  20. Fatás, Antonio & Mihov, Ilian, 1999. "Government Size and Automatic Stabilizers: International and Intranational Evidence," CEPR Discussion Papers 2259, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  21. Christina D. Romer, 1999. "Changes in Business Cycles: Evidence and Explanations," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 13(2), pages 23-44, Spring.
  22. Sungbae An & Frank Schorfheide, 2006. "Bayesian analysis of DSGE models," Working Papers 06-5, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
  23. Sungbae An & Frank Schorfheide, 2007. "Bayesian Analysis of DSGE Models—Rejoinder," Econometric Reviews, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 26(2-4), pages 211-219.
  24. Christina D. Romer & David H. Romer, 2007. "The Macroeconomic Effects of Tax Changes: Estimates Based on a New Measure of Fiscal Shocks," NBER Working Papers 13264, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  25. David B. Gordon & Eric M. Leeper, 2005. "Are Countercyclical Fiscal Policies Counterproductive?," NBER Working Papers 11869, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  26. Harvey, A C & Jaeger, A, 1993. "Detrending, Stylized Facts and the Business Cycle," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 8(3), pages 231-47, July-Sept.
  27. Roberto Perotti, 2002. "Estimating the effects of fiscal policy in OECD countries," Economics Working Papers 015, European Network of Economic Policy Research Institutes.
  28. Anton Braun, R., 1994. "Tax disturbances and real economic activity in the postwar United States," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(3), pages 441-462, June.
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