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A Real Time Tax Smoothing Based Fiscal Policy Rule

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  • Loukoianova, E.
  • Vahey, S.P.
  • Elizabeth C. Wakerly

Abstract

In this paper we consider the real-time implementation of a fiscal policy rule based on tax smoothing (Barro (1979) and Bohn (1998)). We show that the tax smoothing approach, augmented by fiscal habit considerations, provides a surprisingly accurate description of US budget surplus movements. In order to investigate the robustness of the policy implications of the rule, we construct a real-time US fiscal data set, complementing the data documented by Croushore and Stark (2001). For each variable we record the different vintages, reflecting the remeasurements that occur over time. We demonstrate that the easily constructed rule provided a useful benchmark for policy analysis that is robust to real-time remeasurements.

Suggested Citation

  • Loukoianova, E. & Vahey, S.P. & Elizabeth C. Wakerly, 2002. "A Real Time Tax Smoothing Based Fiscal Policy Rule," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 0235, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
  • Handle: RePEc:cam:camdae:0235
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    Cited by:

    1. Jacopo Cimadomo, 2016. "Real-Time Data And Fiscal Policy Analysis: A Survey Of The Literature," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 30(2), pages 302-326, April.
    2. Croushore, Dean & van Norden, Simon, 2014. "Fiscal policy: ex ante and ex post," Working Papers 14-22, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
    3. Jacopo Cimadomo, 2012. "Fiscal Policy in Real Time," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 114(2), pages 440-465, June.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    fiscal rules; tax smoothing; fiscal habits; real-time data;

    JEL classification:

    • C82 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Data Collection and Data Estimation Methodology; Computer Programs - - - Methodology for Collecting, Estimating, and Organizing Macroeconomic Data; Data Access
    • E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy
    • E66 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - General Outlook and Conditions

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