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Is There a Debt-threshold Effect on Output Growth?

Author

Listed:
  • Alexander Chudik
  • Kamiar Mohaddes
  • M. Hashem Pesaran
  • Mehdi Raissi

Abstract

This paper studies the long-run impact of public debt expansion on economic growth and investigates whether the debt-growth relation varies with the level of indebtedness. Our contribution is both theoretical and empirical. On the theoretical side, we develop tests for threshold effects in the context of dynamic heterogeneous panel data models with cross-sectionally dependent errors and illustrate, by means of Monte Carlo experiments, that they perform well in small samples. On the empirical side, using data on a sample of 40 countries (grouped into advanced and developing) over the 1965-2010 period, we and no evidence for a universally applicable threshold effect in the relationship between public debt and economic growth, once we account for the impact of global factors and their spillover effects. Regardless of the threshold, however, we find significant negative long-run effects of public debt build-up on output growth. Provided that public debt is on a downward trajectory, a country with a high level of debt can grow just as fast as its peers.

Suggested Citation

  • Alexander Chudik & Kamiar Mohaddes & M. Hashem Pesaran & Mehdi Raissi, 2015. "Is There a Debt-threshold Effect on Output Growth?," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 1520, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
  • Handle: RePEc:cam:camdae:1520
    Note: km418, mhp1
    as

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. repec:eme:aecozz:s0731-905320160000036013 is not listed on IDEAS
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Panel tests of threshold effects; long-run relationships; estimation and inference; large dynamic heterogeneous panels; cross-section dependence; debt; and inflation.;

    JEL classification:

    • C23 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models
    • E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy
    • F34 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - International Lending and Debt Problems
    • H6 - Public Economics - - National Budget, Deficit, and Debt

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