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Government Information Transparency

  • Facundo Albornoz
  • Joan Esteban
  • Paolo Vanin

This paper studies a model of announcements by a privately informed government about the future state of the economic activity in an economy subject to recurrent shocks and with distortions due to income taxation. Although transparent communication would ex ante be desirable, we find that even a benevolent government may ex-post be non-informative, in an attempt to countervail the tax distortion with a 'second best' compensating distortion in information. This result provides a rationale for independent national statistical offices, committed to truthful communication. We also find that whether inequality in income distribution favors or harms government transparency depends on labor supply elasticity.

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File URL: http://research.barcelonagse.eu/tmp/working_papers/392.pdf
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Paper provided by Barcelona Graduate School of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 392.

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Date of creation: May 2009
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Handle: RePEc:bge:wpaper:392
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  1. Manuel Amador & Pierre-Olivier Weill, 2008. "Learning from Prices: Public Communication and Welfare," NBER Working Papers 14255, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Svensson, Lars E.O. & Faust, John, 1998. "Transparency and Credibility: Monetary Policy with Unobservable Goals," Seminar Papers 636, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
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  4. Maria Demertzis & Andrew Hughes Hallet, 2003. "Central Bank Transparency in Theory and Practice," DNB Staff Reports (discontinued) 105, Netherlands Central Bank.
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  6. Oh, Seonghwan & Waldman, Michael, 1990. "The Macroeconomic Effects of False Announcements," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 105(4), pages 1017-34, November.
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  8. Rodriguez Mora, Jose V. & Schulstad, Paul, 2007. "The effect of GNP announcements on fluctuations of GNP growth," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 51(8), pages 1922-1940, November.
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  10. E. Kohlberg & J.-F. Mertens, 1998. "On the Strategic Stability of Equilibria," Levine's Working Paper Archive 445, David K. Levine.
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  14. Weiss, Laurence, 1976. "The Desirability of Cheating Incentives and Randomness in the Optimal Income Tax," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 84(6), pages 1343-52, December.
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  16. Alan S. Blinder & Michael Ehrmann & Marcel Fratzscher & Jakob de Haan & David-Jan Jansen, 2008. "Central Bank Communication and Monetary Policy: A Survey of Theory and Evidence," DNB Working Papers 170, Netherlands Central Bank, Research Department.
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  19. André Sapir & Xavier Debrun, 2010. "Government Size and Output Volatility: Should We Forsake Automatic Stabilization ?," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/174323, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
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  21. repec:bla:restud:v:76:y:2009:i:3:p:1023-1048 is not listed on IDEAS
  22. Meltzer, Allan H & Richard, Scott F, 1981. "A Rational Theory of the Size of Government," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(5), pages 914-27, October.
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  26. Stephen Morris, 1999. "Political Correctness," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1242, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  27. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1977. "Rules Rather Than Discretion: The Inconsistency of Optimal Plans," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 473-91, June.
  28. Shi, Min & Svensson, Jakob, 2006. "Political budget cycles: Do they differ across countries and why?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(8-9), pages 1367-1389, September.
  29. Svensson, Lars & Faust, Jon, 1999. "The Equilibrium Degree of Transparency and Control in Monetary Policy," Seminar Papers 669, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
  30. Richard J. Arnott & Joseph E. Stiglitz, 1988. "Randomization with Asymmetric Information," NBER Working Papers 2507, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  31. George-Marios Angeletos & Alessandro Pavan, 2007. "Policy with Dispersed Information," NBER Working Papers 13590, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  32. Cho, In-Koo & Kreps, David M, 1987. "Signaling Games and Stable Equilibria," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 102(2), pages 179-221, May.
  33. Joan Esteban & Debraj Ray, 2006. "Inequality, Lobbying, and Resource Allocation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(1), pages 257-279, March.
  34. Romer, Thomas, 1975. "Individual welfare, majority voting, and the properties of a linear income tax," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 4(2), pages 163-185, February.
  35. Christopher Sleet, 2004. "Optimal Taxation with Private Government Information," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 71(4), pages 1217-1239, October.
  36. Sleet, Christopher, 2001. "On Credible Monetary Policy and Private Government Information," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 99(1-2), pages 338-376, July.
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