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Fiscal Rules and Composition Bias in OECD Countries

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  • Momi Dahan
  • Michel Strawczynski

Abstract

Using a sample of OECD countries, this paper finds that while fiscal rules succeeded in reducing total government expenditures and budget deficits in the medium term, they significantly affected the composition of government expenditure: the ratio of social transfers to government consumption declined. In contrast, we do not find a stable effect of fiscal rules on public investment. It is shown that the compositional shift against social transfers is beyond “from welfare to work” policies, which have been adopted by many OECD countries during the nineties. Our empirical examination reveals that the reduction of social transfers relative to government consumption did not occur in countries with strong legal protection to social rights.

Suggested Citation

  • Momi Dahan & Michel Strawczynski, 2010. "Fiscal Rules and Composition Bias in OECD Countries," CESifo Working Paper Series 3088, CESifo.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_3088
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    Cited by:

    1. Momi Dahan & Michel Strawczynski, 2020. "Budget institutions and government effectiveness," Journal of Public Budgeting, Accounting & Financial Management, Emerald Group Publishing Limited, vol. 32(2), pages 217-246, April.
    2. Heinemann, Friedrich & Janeba, Eckhard & Schröder, Christoph & Streif, Frank, 2016. "Fiscal rules and compliance expectations – Evidence for the German debt brake," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 142(C), pages 11-23.
    3. Tóth, Csaba G., 2017. "Own or inherited? The effect of national fiscal rules after changes of government," MPRA Paper 81178, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    4. Chen, Yu-Fu & Funke, Michael, 2010. "Global Warming And Extreme Events: Rethinking The Timing And Intensity Of Environmental Policy," SIRE Discussion Papers 2010-48, Scottish Institute for Research in Economics (SIRE).
    5. Csaba G. Tóth, 2019. "Valuable legacy? The effect of inherited fiscal rules," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 178(1), pages 3-30, January.
    6. Heinemann, Friedrich & Osterloh, Steffen & Kalb, Alexander, 2014. "Sovereign risk premia: The link between fiscal rules and stability culture," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 110-127.
    7. Étienne Farvaque & Martial Foucault & Marcelin Joanis, 2015. "L’endettement public des provinces canadiennes : Les règles d’équilibre budgétaire sont-elles efficaces?," CIRANO Working Papers 2015s-10, CIRANO.
    8. António Afonso & João Jalles, 2017. "Do Fiscal Rules Lower Government Financing Costs?," Working Papers REM 2017/15, ISEG - Lisbon School of Economics and Management, REM, Universidade de Lisboa.
    9. Farvaque, Étienne & Foucault, Martial & Joanis, Marcelin, 2012. "Les règles budgétaires dans les provinces canadiennes : nomenclatures et éléments d’analyse," L'Actualité Economique, Société Canadienne de Science Economique, vol. 88(3), pages 281-315, Septembre.
    10. Bea Cantillon, 2010. "Disambiguating Lisbon. Growth, Employment and Social Inclusion in the Investment State," Working Papers 1007, Herman Deleeck Centre for Social Policy, University of Antwerp.
    11. Reuter, Wolf Heinrich, 2015. "National numerical fiscal rules: Not complied with, but still effective?," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 39(C), pages 67-81.
    12. Tóth G., Csaba, 2017. "A nemzeti költségvetési szabályok elterjedése és hatása Európában [The spread of national fiscal rules and their effect in Europe]," Közgazdasági Szemle (Economic Review - monthly of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences), Közgazdasági Szemle Alapítvány (Economic Review Foundation), vol. 0(11), pages 1119-1147.
    13. Bergman, U. Michael & Hutchison, Michael M. & Jensen, Svend E. Hougaard, 2016. "Promoting sustainable public finances in the European Union: The role of fiscal rules and government efficiency," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 44(C), pages 1-19.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    fiscal rules; government deficit; government expenditure; expenditures composition;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy; Modern Monetary Theory
    • H00 - Public Economics - - General - - - General
    • H30 - Public Economics - - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents - - - General

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