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Improving the SGP: Taxes and Delegation rather than Fines

  • Assar Lindbeck
  • Dirk Niepelt

We analyze motivations for, and possible alternatives to, the Stability and Growth Pact (SGP). With regard to the former, we identify domestic policy failures and various cross-country spillover effects; with regard to the latter, we contrast an “economic-theory" perspective on optimal corrective measures with the “legalistic" perspective adopted in the SGP. We discuss the advantages of replacing the Pact's rigid rules backed by fines with corrective taxes (as far as spillover effects are concerned) and procedural rules and limited delegation of fiscal powers (as far as domestic policy failures are concerned). This would not only enhance the efficiency of the Pact, but also render it easier to enforce.

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File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/portal/page/portal/DocBase_Content/WP/WP-CESifo_Working_Papers/wp-cesifo-2005/wp-cesifo-2005-01/cesifo1_wp1389.pdf
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Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 1389.

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Date of creation: 2005
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Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_1389
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  1. Beetsma, Roel & Bovenberg, A Lans, 1995. "Does Monetary Unification Lead to Excessive Debt Accumulation?," CEPR Discussion Papers 1299, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Marco Bassetto & Thomas J Sargent, 2006. "Politics and Efficiency of Separating Capital and Ordinary Government Budgets," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 121(4), pages 1167-1210, November.
  3. Beetsma, Roel & Uhlig, Harald, 1999. "An Analysis of the Stability and Growth Pact," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 109(458), pages 546-71, October.
  4. Lars Jonung & Martin Larch, 2006. "Improving fiscal policy in the EU: the case for independent forecasts," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 21(47), pages 491-534, 07.
  5. Blanchard, Olivier J & Giavazzi, Francesco, 2004. "Improving the SGP Through a Proper Accounting of Public Investment," CEPR Discussion Papers 4220, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. V.V. Chari & Patrick J. Kehoe, 2004. "On the Desirability of Fiscal Constraints in a Monetary Union," NBER Working Papers 10232, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Buiter, W.H. & Corsetti, G. & Roubini, N., 1992. "Excessive Deficits: Sense and Nonsence in the Treaty of Maastricht," Papers 674, Yale - Economic Growth Center.
  8. Niepelt, Dirk, 2003. "Tax Evasion Dynamics," Seminar Papers 721, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
  9. Uhlig, Harald, 2002. "One Money, but Many Fiscal Policies in Europe: What Are the Consequences?," CEPR Discussion Papers 3296, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Alessandra Casella, 1999. "Tradable deficit permits:efficient implementation of the Stability Pact in the European Monetary Union," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 14(29), pages 321-362, October.
  11. Barro, Robert J. & Gordon, David B., 1983. "Rules, discretion and reputation in a model of monetary policy," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(1), pages 101-121.
  12. Alberto Alesina & Roberto Perotti, 1994. "The Political Economy of Budget Deficits," NBER Working Papers 4637, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Antonio Fat·s & Ilian Mihov, 2003. "On Constraining Fiscal Policy Discretion in EMU," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 19(1), pages 112-131.
  14. Dixit, Avinash & Lambertini, Luisa, 2001. "Monetary-fiscal policy interactions and commitment versus discretion in a monetary union," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(4-6), pages 977-987, May.
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