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Economic, Political and Institutional Determinants of Budget Deficits in the European Union

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  • Ali Bayar
  • Bram Smeets

Abstract

Using an extended data set of EU countries ranging from 1971-2006 and relevant econometric methods, we investigate the economic, political, and institutional determinants of government deficits in the EU. The results show a strong opportunistic behaviour of policymakers which leads to political business cycles. We find that political fragmentation does not play a significant role in government deficits. Partisan behaviour has a weak effect. The stability of the government has a significant negative impact on the size of the budget deficit. The paper also shows the significant effects of the Maastricht Treaty on fiscal consolidation.

Suggested Citation

  • Ali Bayar & Bram Smeets, 2009. "Economic, Political and Institutional Determinants of Budget Deficits in the European Union," CESifo Working Paper Series 2611, CESifo Group Munich.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_2611
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    File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/DocDL/cesifo1_wp2611.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Carlos Mulas-Granados, 2003. "The Political and Economic Determinants of Budgetary Consolidation in Europe," European Political Economy Review, European Political Economy Infrastructure Consortium, vol. 1(Spring), pages 15-39.
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    3. Mark Mink & Jakob de Haan, 2005. "Has the Stability and Growth Pact Impeded Political Budget Cycles in the European Union?," CESifo Working Paper Series 1532, CESifo Group Munich.
    4. Perotti, Roberto & Kontopoulos, Yianos, 2002. "Fragmented fiscal policy," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 86(2), pages 191-222, November.
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    6. Roubini, Nouriel & Sachs, Jeffrey D., 1989. "Political and economic determinants of budget deficits in the industrial democracies," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 33(5), pages 903-933, May.
    7. de Haan, Jakob & Sturm, Jan-Egbert, 1994. "Political and Institutional Determinants of Fiscal Policy in the European Community," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 80(1-2), pages 157-172, July.
    8. Volkerink, Bjorn & De Haan, Jakob, 2001. "Fragmented Government Effects on Fiscal Policy: New Evidence," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 109(3-4), pages 221-242, December.
    9. Barro, Robert J, 1979. "On the Determination of the Public Debt," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(5), pages 940-971, October.
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    11. Andrikopoulos, Andreas & Loizides, Ioannis & Prodromidis, Kyprianos, 2004. "Fiscal policy and political business cycles in the EU," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 20(1), pages 125-152, March.
    12. Edin, Per-Anders & Ohlsson, Henry, 1991. "Political determinants of budget deficits: Coalition effects versus minority effects," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 35(8), pages 1597-1603, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. Schönfelder, Nina & Wagner, Helmut, 2015. "The impact of European integration on institutional development," MPRA Paper 63392, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Roberto Fernández Llera & María A. García Valiñas, 2010. "Efficiency and elusion: both sides of public enterprises in Spain," Working Papers 2010/5, Institut d'Economia de Barcelona (IEB).
    3. Lukmanova, Elizaveta & Tondl, Gabriele, 2017. "Macroeconomic imbalances and business cycle synchronization. Why common economic governance is imperative for the Eurozone," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 62(C), pages 130-144.
    4. Anwar, Mumtaz & Ahmad, Munazza, 2012. "Political determinants of budget deficit in Pakistan: An empirical investigation," HWWI Research Papers 135, Hamburg Institute of International Economics (HWWI).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    fiscal policy; European Monetary Union;

    JEL classification:

    • C33 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple 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
    • H60 - Public Economics - - National Budget, Deficit, and Debt - - - General
    • H87 - Public Economics - - Miscellaneous Issues - - - International Fiscal Issues; International Public Goods

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