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Government Information Transparency

  • Facundo Albornoz
  • Joan Esteban
  • Paolo Vanin

This paper studies a model of announcements by a privately in- formed 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 re- sult 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 trans- parency depends on labor supply elasticity.

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File URL: ftp://ftp.bham.ac.uk/pub/RePEc/pdf/09-03.pdf
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Paper provided by Department of Economics, University of Birmingham in its series Discussion Papers with number 09-03.

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Length: 47 pages
Date of creation: May 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:bir:birmec:09-03
Contact details of provider: Postal: Edgbaston, Birmingham, B15 2TT
Web page: http://www.economics.bham.ac.uk

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  1. Demertzis, Maria & Hughes Hallett, Andrew, 2007. "Central Bank transparency in theory and practice," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 29(4), pages 760-789, December.
  2. Sleet, Christopher, 2001. "On Credible Monetary Policy and Private Government Information," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 99(1-2), pages 338-376, July.
  3. Oh, S. & Waldman, M., 1990. "The Macroeconomic Effects Of False Announcements," Papers 17, California Los Angeles - Applied Econometrics.
  4. Faust, Jon & Svensson, Lars E O, 1998. "Transparency and Credibility: Monetary Policy with Unobservable Goals," CEPR Discussion Papers 1852, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Jeffery D. Amato & Hyun Song Shin & Stephen Morris, 2003. "Communication and monetary policy," BIS Working Papers 123, Bank for International Settlements.
  6. 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," Working Papers 1038, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Center for Economic Policy Studies..
  7. Manuel Amador & Pierre Olivier Weill, 2008. "Learning from Prices: Public Communication and Welfare," 2008 Meeting Papers 390, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  8. Xavier Debrun & Jean Pisani-Ferry & André Sapir, 2008. "Government size and output volatility: should we forsake automatic stabilisation?," Working Papers 47, Bruegel.
  9. Susan Athey & Andrew Atkeson & Patrick J. Kehoe, 2005. "The Optimal Degree of Discretion in Monetary Policy," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 73(5), pages 1431-1475, 09.
  10. 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.
  11. Kohlberg, Elon & Mertens, Jean-Francois, 1986. "On the Strategic Stability of Equilibria," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 54(5), pages 1003-37, September.
  12. Richard J. Arnott & Joseph E. Stiglitz, 1988. "Randomization with Asymmetric Information," NBER Working Papers 2507, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Petra M. Geraats, 2009. "Trends in Monetary Policy Transparency," International Finance, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 12(2), pages 235-268, 08.
  14. 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.
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  16. In-Koo Cho & David M. Kreps, 1997. "Signaling Games and Stable Equilibria," Levine's Working Paper Archive 896, David K. Levine.
  17. 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.
  18. Alessandro Gavazza & Alessandro Lizzeri, 2009. "Transparency and Economic Policy," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 76(3), pages 1023-1048.
  19. George-Marios Angeletos & Alessandro Pavan, 2007. "Policy with Dispersed Information," NBER Working Papers 13590, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Farrell, Joseph, 1986. "Meaning and Credibility in Cheap-Talk Games," Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt4968n3fz, Department of Economics, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
  21. Stephen Morris, 1999. "Political Correctness," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1242, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  22. 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.
  23. repec:bla:restud:v:76:y:2009:i:3:p:1023-1048 is not listed on IDEAS
  24. Milesi-Ferretti, Gian Maria, 2001. "Good, Bad or Ugly? On the Effects of Fiscal Rules with Creative Accounting," CEPR Discussion Papers 2663, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  25. Christopher Sleet, 2004. "Optimal Taxation with Private Government Information," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 71(4), pages 1217-1239, October.
  26. V. Crawford & J. Sobel, 2010. "Strategic Information Transmission," Levine's Working Paper Archive 544, David K. Levine.
  27. 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.
  28. 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.
  29. Francesca Barigozzi & Bertrand Villeneuve, 2006. "The Signaling Effect of Tax Policy," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 8(4), pages 611-630, October.
  30. David H. Romer & Christina D. Romer, 2000. "Federal Reserve Information and the Behavior of Interest Rates," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(3), pages 429-457, June.
  31. Cho, In-Koo, 1987. "A Refinement of Sequential Equilibrium," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(6), pages 1367-89, November.
  32. Seonghwan Oh & Michael Waldman, 2005. "The Index of Leading Economic Indicators as a Source of Expectational Shocks," Eastern Economic Journal, Eastern Economic Association, vol. 31(1), pages 75-95, Winter.
  33. Roberts, Kevin W. S., 1977. "Voting over income tax schedules," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 329-340, December.
  34. Cukierman, Alex & Meltzer, Allan H, 1986. "A Theory of Ambiguity, Credibility, and Inflation under Discretion and Asymmetric Information," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 54(5), pages 1099-1128, September.
  35. Joan Esteban & Debraj Ray, 2006. "Inequality, Lobbying, and Resource Allocation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(1), pages 257-279, March.
  36. repec:rje:randje:v:37:y:2006:1:p:155-175 is not listed on IDEAS
  37. Ying Chen & Navin Kartik & Joel Sobel, 2008. "Selecting Cheap-Talk Equilibria," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 76(1), pages 117-136, 01.
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