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Using Military Build-Ups to Capture Fiscal Shocks: A Reassessment

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  • Weonho Yang
  • Jan Fidrmuc
  • Sugata Ghosh

Abstract

Ramey (2011a) and others argue that increases in government spending associated with wars and military build-ups constitute a good instrument for measuring the macroeconomic effects of fiscal shocks. We argue that this instrument has two important drawbacks: the composition of government spending during military build-ups in the US differs substantially from general government expenditure, and increases in military spending tend to crowd out federal non-defense spending as well as spending by state and local governments. These weaknesses help to explain why fiscal multipliers estimated with military build-ups tend to be smaller than those estimated using other approaches.

Suggested Citation

  • Weonho Yang & Jan Fidrmuc & Sugata Ghosh, 2014. "Using Military Build-Ups to Capture Fiscal Shocks: A Reassessment," CESifo Working Paper Series 4689, CESifo.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_4689
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Giordano, Raffaela & Momigliano, Sandro & Neri, Stefano & Perotti, Roberto, 2007. "The effects of fiscal policy in Italy: Evidence from a VAR model," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 707-733, September.
    2. Burnside, Craig & Eichenbaum, Martin & Fisher, Jonas D. M., 2004. "Fiscal shocks and their consequences," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 115(1), pages 89-117, March.
    3. Benetrix, Agustin & Lane, Philip R., 2009. "The Impact of Fiscal Shocks on the Irish Economy," The Economic and Social Review, Economic and Social Studies, vol. 40(4), pages 407-434.
    4. Daron Acemoglu & David H. Autor & David Lyle, 2004. "Women, War, and Wages: The Effect of Female Labor Supply on the Wage Structure at Midcentury," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(3), pages 497-551, June.
    5. Olivier Blanchard & Roberto Perotti, 2002. "An Empirical Characterization of the Dynamic Effects of Changes in Government Spending and Taxes on Output," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 117(4), pages 1329-1368.
    6. Valerie A. Ramey, 2011. "Can Government Purchases Stimulate the Economy?," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 49(3), pages 673-685, September.
    7. Robert J. Barro & Charles J. Redlick, 2011. "Macroeconomic Effects From Government Purchases and Taxes," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 126(1), pages 51-102.
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    Cited by:

    1. Daniele Girardi & Riccardo Pariboni, 2020. "Autonomous demand and the investment share," Review of Keynesian Economics, Edward Elgar Publishing, vol. 8(3), pages 428-453, July.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    fiscal shocks; fiscal multiplier; military build-ups; US economy;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • E13 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General Aggregative Models - - - Neoclassical
    • E22 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Investment; Capital; Intangible Capital; Capacity
    • E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy

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