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Party alignment and political budget cycles: the Argentine provinces

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  • Daniel Lema
  • Jorge M. Streb

Abstract

The links between subnational political budget cycles (PBCs) and the national government in federal countries have seldom been studied. We study the behavior of the budget balance, public expenditures, and revenues in Argentine provinces during the 1985–2001 period. We find that in election years public expenditures increase, but revenues also do — a result exactly contrary to the predictions of rational opportunistic models of aggregate PBCs — and the budget deficit does not increase significantly. Since the increase in provincial revenues is due to larger federal transfers, we incorporate the influence of party alignment between governors and president. Public expenditures in election years increase in aligned provinces because of larger federal transfers, without affecting the budget deficit; in contrast, the budget deficit tends to increase in unaligned provinces. The federal government thus plays a key role in subnational PBCs, with an electoral cycle in the allocation of federal transfers.

Suggested Citation

  • Daniel Lema & Jorge M. Streb, 2013. "Party alignment and political budget cycles: the Argentine provinces," CEMA Working Papers: Serie Documentos de Trabajo. 520, Universidad del CEMA.
  • Handle: RePEc:cem:doctra:520
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    File URL: http://www.ucema.edu.ar/publicaciones/download/documentos/520.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    5. Bugarin, Mauricio Soares & Ferreira, Ivan Fecury, 2007. "Transferências Voluntárias e Ciclo Político-Orçamentário no Federalismo Fiscal Brasileiro," Revista Brasileira de Economia - RBE, FGV/EPGE - Escola Brasileira de Economia e Finanças, Getulio Vargas Foundation (Brazil), vol. 61(3), March.
    6. Shanna Rose, 2006. "Do fiscal rules dampen the political business cycle?," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 128(3), pages 407-431, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. Eric Dubois, 2016. "Political business cycles 40 years after Nordhaus," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 166(1), pages 235-259, January.
    2. Eric Dubois, 2016. "Political Business Cycles 40 Years after Nordhaus," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) hal-01291401, HAL.
    3. repec:hal:journl:hal-01291401 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Klein, Fabio Alvim & Sakurai, Sergio Naruhiko, 2015. "Term limits and political budget cycles at the local level: evidence from a young democracy," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 21-36.
    5. Fabio Alvim Klein & Sergio Naruhiko Sakurai, 2016. "Term Limits And Political Budget Cycles At The Local Level: Evidence From A Young Democracy," Anais do XLII Encontro Nacional de Economia [Proceedings of the 42nd Brazilian Economics Meeting] 052, ANPEC - Associação Nacional dos Centros de Pós-Graduação em Economia [Brazilian Association of Graduate Programs in Economics].
    6. Guglielmo Barone & Guido de Blasio & Alessio D'Ignazio & Andrea Salvati, 2017. "Incentives to local public service provision: an evaluation of Italy’s Obiettivi di Servizio," Questioni di Economia e Finanza (Occasional Papers) 388, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    political budget cycles; federal countries; discretional transfers; tactical allocation; party alignment; distributive politics;

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy

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