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Shocking Policy Coefficients

  • Luca Gambetti

This paper proposes an empirical framework to study the effects of a policy regime change defined as an unpredictable and permanent change in the policy parameters. In particular I show how to make conditional forecast and perform impulse response functions and counterfactual analysis. As an application, the effects of changes in fiscal policy rules in the US are investigated. I find that discretionary fiscal policy has become more countercyclical over the last decades. In absence of such a change, surplus would have been higher, debt lower and output gap more volatile but only until mid 80s. An increase in the degree of counter-cyclicality of fiscal policy has a positive effect on output gap in periods where the level of debt-to-GDP ratio is low and a zero or negative effect when the ratio is high. This explains why a more countercylical stance of the systematic fiscal policy taking place in 2008:II is predicted to be rather ineffective for recovering from the crisis.

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Paper provided by Barcelona Graduate School of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 647.

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Date of creation: May 2012
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Handle: RePEc:bge:wpaper:647
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  1. Hess Chung & Troy Davig & Eric M. Leeper, 2007. "Monetary and Fiscal Policy Switching," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 39(4), pages 809-842, 06.
  2. John B. Taylor, 1998. "An Historical Analysis of Monetary Policy Rules," NBER Working Papers 6768, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Clarida, R. & Gali, J. & Gertler, M., 1998. "Monetary Policy Rules and Macroeconomic Stability: Evidence and some Theory," Working Papers 98-01, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  4. Eric M. Leeper & Tao Zha, 2002. "Modest Policy Interventions," NBER Working Papers 9192, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Troy Davig & Eric M. Leeper, 2005. "Fluctuating Macro Policies and the Fiscal Theory," NBER Working Papers 11212, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Thomas A. Lubik & Frank Schorfheide, 2004. "Testing for Indeterminacy: An Application to U.S. Monetary Policy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(1), pages 190-217, March.
  7. John B. Taylor, 1999. "Monetary Policy Rules," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number tayl99-1, August.
  8. John B. Taylor, 1999. "Introduction to "Monetary Policy Rules"," NBER Chapters, in: Monetary Policy Rules, pages 1-14 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. David B. Gordon & Eric M. Leeper, 2005. "Are Countercyclical Fiscal Policies Counterproductive?," NBER Working Papers 11869, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. John B. Taylor, 2000. "Reassessing Discretionary Fiscal Policy," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(3), pages 21-36, Summer.
  11. Roberto Perotti, 1999. "Fiscal Policy In Good Times And Bad," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 114(4), pages 1399-1436, November.
  12. Koop, Gary & Pesaran, M. Hashem & Potter, Simon M., 1996. "Impulse response analysis in nonlinear multivariate models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 74(1), pages 119-147, September.
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