IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

The Effects of Fiscal Institutions on Public Finance: A Survey of the Empirical Evidence

  • Gebhard Kirchgässner

This paper surveys the empirical research on fiscal institutions of the last three decades. The main results are: (i) Constitutional or statutory fiscal limitations have in most cases proved to be effective in cutting down public expenditure, revenue, and debt. (ii) Budgetary proce-dures matter as well. They might be less effective than constitutional or statutory rules, but in a situation where it is impossible to introduce such rules they might present a feasible second-best way to reach fiscal sustainability. (iii) Citizens demand fewer public services and a sounder fiscal policy in systems with direct legislation than in purely parliamentary systems. (iv) There is some evidence that fiscal federalism leads  ceteris pari-bus  to a smaller size of the government. There are also political institutions which have an impact on the public budg-ets, and there are some interactions between the different institutions.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/portal/page/portal/DocBase_Content/WP/WP-CESifo_Working_Papers/wp-cesifo-2001/wp-cesifo-2001-12/cesifo_wp617.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 617.

as
in new window

Length:
Date of creation: 2001
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_617
Contact details of provider: Postal: Poschingerstrasse 5, 81679 Munich
Phone: +49 (89) 9224-0
Fax: +49 (89) 985369
Web page: http://www.cesifo.de
Email:


More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Oates, Wallace E, 1985. "Searching for Leviathan: An Empirical Study," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(4), pages 748-57, September.
  2. Downes, Thomas A. & Dye, Richard F. & McGuire, Therese J., 1998. "Do Limits Matter? Evidence on the Effects of Tax Limitations on Student Performance," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(3), pages 401-417, May.
  3. Persson, Torsten & Tabellini, Guido, 1998. "The size and scope of government: Comparative politics with rational politicians," Seminar Papers 658, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
  4. Ricardo Hausmann & Alberto Alesina & Rudolf Hommes & Ernesto H. Stein, 1998. "Budget Institutions and Fiscal Performance in Latin America," Research Department Publications 4160, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
  5. Santerre, Rexford E, 1993. " Representative versus Direct Democracy: The Role of Public Bureaucrats," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 76(3), pages 189-98, July.
  6. Wallis, John Joseph & Oates, Wallace E, 1988. "Does Economic Sclerosis Set in with Age? An Empirical Study of the Olson Hypothesis," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 41(3), pages 397-417.
  7. Randall W. Eberts & Timothy J. Gronberg, 1988. "Can competition among local governments constrain government spending?," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, issue Q I, pages 2-9.
  8. Philip J. Grossman, 1989. "Federalism and the Size of Government," Monash Economics Working Papers archive-08, Monash University, Department of Economics.
  9. Downes, Thomas A. & Figlio, David N., 1999. "Do Tax and Expenditure Limits Provide a Free Lunch? Evidence on the Link Between Limits and Public Sector Service Quality," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 52(n. 1), pages 113-28, March.
  10. Charles M. Tiebout, 1956. "A Pure Theory of Local Expenditures," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 64, pages 416.
  11. Christoph A. Schaltegger & Lars P. Feld, 2001. "On Government Centralization and Budget Referendums: Evidence from Switzerland," CESifo Working Paper Series 615, CESifo Group Munich.
  12. Feld, Lars P & Savioz, Marcel R, 1997. "Direct Democracy Matters for Economic Performance: An Empirical Investigation," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(4), pages 507-38.
  13. Bruno S. Frey & Alois Stutzer, 2000. "Happiness, Economy and Institutions," CESifo Working Paper Series 246, CESifo Group Munich.
  14. James M. Poterba & Kim Rueben, 1999. "State Fiscal Institutions and the U.S. Municipal Bond Market," NBER Chapters, in: Fiscal Institutions and Fiscal Performance, pages 181-208 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Downes, Thomas A., 1992. "Evaluating the Impact of School Finance Reform on the Provision of Public Education: The California Case," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 45(4), pages 405-19, December.
  16. Forbes, Kevin F & Zampelli, Ernest M, 1989. "Is Leviathan a Mythical Beast?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(3), pages 568-77, June.
  17. Wrede, Matthias, 1999. " Tragedy of the Fiscal Common?: Fiscal Stock Externalities in a Leviathan Model of Federalism," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 101(3-4), pages 177-93, December.
  18. Robert C. Lowry, 2001. "A Visible Hand? Bond Markets, Political Parties, Balanced Budget Laws, and State Government Debt," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 13(1), pages 49-72, 03.
  19. Figlio, David N., 1997. "Did the "tax revolt" reduce school performance?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(3), pages 245-269, September.
  20. Romer, Thomas & Rosenthal, Howard, 1979. "The elusive median voter," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(2), pages 143-170, October.
  21. Figlio, David N & O'Sullivan, Arthur, 2001. "The Local Response to Tax Limitation Measures: Do Local Governments Manipulate Voters to Increase Revenues?," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 44(1), pages 233-57, April.
  22. T. A. Downes & D. N. Figlio, . "School Finance Reforms, Tax Limits, and Student Performance: Do Reforms Level Up or Dumb Down?," Institute for Research on Poverty Discussion Papers 1142-97, University of Wisconsin Institute for Research on Poverty.
  23. Nordhaus, William D, 1975. "The Political Business Cycle," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 42(2), pages 169-90, April.
  24. Nelson, Michael A, 1987. "Searching for Leviathan: Comment and Extension," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(1), pages 198-204, March.
  25. Torsten Persson & Gerard Roland & Guido Tabellini, 2000. "Comparative Politics and Public Finance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(6), pages 1121-1161, December.
  26. Saunders, Peter G, 1988. "Explaining International Differences in Public Expenditure: An Empirical Study," Public Finance = Finances publiques, , vol. 43(2), pages 271-94.
  27. P.J. Grossman, 1988. "Fiscal Decentralization and Government Size: An extension," Economics Discussion / Working Papers 88-16, The University of Western Australia, Department of Economics.
  28. Sung Deuk Hahm & Mark S. Kamlet & David C. Mowery & Tsai-Tsu Su, 1992. "The influence of the gramm-rudman-hollings act on federal budgetary outcomes, 1986-1989," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 11(2), pages 207-234.
  29. Ehrhart, Karl-Martin & Gardner, Roy & von Hagen, Jürgen & Keser*, Claudia, 2004. "Budget Processes: Theory and Experimental Evidence," Sonderforschungsbereich 504 Publications 04-57, Sonderforschungsbereich 504, Universität Mannheim;Sonderforschungsbereich 504, University of Mannheim.
  30. 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 157-72, July.
  31. Matthias Wrede, 2000. "Shared Tax Sources and Public Expenditures," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 7(2), pages 163-175, March.
  32. Buchanan, James M., 1986. "The Constitution of Economic Policy," Nobel Prize in Economics documents 1986-1, Nobel Prize Committee.
  33. Noam, Eli M, 1980. "The Efficiency of Direct Democracy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 88(4), pages 803-10, August.
  34. Brennan, Geoffrey & Buchanan, James M., 1977. "Towards a tax constitution for Leviathan," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 255-273, December.
  35. Chicoine, David L & Walzer, N & Deller, S C, 1989. "Representative vs. Direct Democracy and Government Spending in a Median Voter Model," Public Finance = Finances publiques, , vol. 44(2), pages 225-36.
  36. Pantelis Capros & Danièle Meulders, 1997. "Budgetary policy modelling: public expenditures," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/13460, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  37. Buchanan, James M, 1985. "The Moral Dimension of Debt Financing," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 23(1), pages 1-6, January.
  38. Apolte, Thomas, 2001. " How Tame Will Leviathan Become in Institutional Competition? Competition among Governments in the Provision of Public Goods," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 107(3-4), pages 359-81, June.
  39. David M. Cutler & Douglas W. Elmendorf & Richard Zeckhauser, 1997. "Restraining the Leviathan: property tax limitations in Massachusetts," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 1997-47, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  40. James M. Poterba, 1993. "State Responses to Fiscal Crisis: The Effects of Budgetary Institutionsand Politics," NBER Working Papers 4375, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  41. Blomberg, S. Brock & Hess, Gregory D. & Weerapana, Akila, 2004. "The impact of voter initiatives on economic activity," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 20(1), pages 207-226, March.
  42. Farnham, Paul G, 1990. " The Impact of Citizen Influence on Local Government Expenditure," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 64(3), pages 201-12, March.
  43. Harold W. Elder, 1992. "Exploring the Tax Revolt: an Analysis of the Effects of State Tax and Expenditure Limitation Laws," Public Finance Review, , vol. 20(1), pages 47-63, January.
  44. Sieg, Gernot, 2001. "A political business cycle with boundedly rational agents," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 17(1), pages 39-52, March.
  45. von Hagen,Juergen, . "A note on the empirical effectiveness of formal fiscal restraints," Discussion Paper Serie B 155, University of Bonn, Germany.
  46. Mark P. Jones & Pablo Sanguinetti & Mariano Tommasi, 1999. "Politics, Institutions, and Public-Sector Spending in the Argentine Provinces," NBER Chapters, in: Fiscal Institutions and Fiscal Performance, pages 135-150 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  47. Gordon, Robert J., 1989. "Comments 'political and economic determinants of budget deficits in the industrial democracies' by N. Roubini and J.D. Sachs," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 33(5), pages 934-938, May.
  48. Sexton, Terri A. & Sheffrin, Steven M. & O’Sullivan, Arthur, 1999. "Proposition 13: Unintended Effects and Feasible Reforms," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 52(n. 1), pages 99-112, March.
  49. Matsusaka, John G, 1995. "Fiscal Effects of the Voter Initiative: Evidence from the Last 30 Years," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(3), pages 587-623, June.
  50. Pommerehne, Werner W & Schneider, Friedrich, 1978. "Fiscal Illusion, Political Institutions, and Local Public Spending," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 31(3), pages 381-408.
  51. Susanne Lohmann, 1998. "Rationalizing the Political Business Cycle: A Workhorse Model," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 10(1), pages 1-17, 03.
  52. Gartner, Manfred, 2000. " Political Macroeconomics: A Survey of Recent Developments," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 14(5), pages 527-61, December.
  53. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521021807 is not listed on IDEAS
  54. Rogerson, William P, 1990. "Political Institutions and Fiscal Policy: Evidence from the U.S. Historical Record: Comment," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 6(0), pages 155-66.
  55. Barry Eichengreen & Jeffry Frieden, 1993. "The Political Economy Of European Monetary Unification: An Analytical Introduction," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 5(2), pages 85-104, 07.
  56. Borcherding, Thomas E & Deacon, Robert T, 1972. "The Demand for the Services of Non-Federal Governments," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 62(5), pages 891-901, December.
  57. Poterba, James M., 1995. "Balanced Budget Rules and Fiscal Policy: Evidence From the States," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 48(3), pages 329-36, September.
  58. Matsusaka, John G, 2000. "Fiscal Effects of the Voter Initiative in the First Half of the Twentieth Century," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 43(2), pages 619-50, October.
  59. O'Sullivan, Arthur & Sexton, Terri A. & Sheffrin, Steven M., 1994. "Differential Burdens from the Assessment Provisions of Proposition 13," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 47(4), pages 721-30, December.
  60. von Hagen, Jurgen & Harden, Ian J., 1995. "Budget processes and commitment to fiscal discipline," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 39(3-4), pages 771-779, April.
  61. Galeotti, Gianluigi & Breton, Albert, 1986. "An Economic Theory of Political Parties," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 39(1), pages 47-65.
  62. Mark Hallerberg & Jürgen von Hagen, 1999. "Electoral Institutions, Cabinet Negotiations, and Budget Deficits in the European Union," NBER Chapters, in: Fiscal Institutions and Fiscal Performance, pages 209-232 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  63. Weingast, Barry R & Shepsle, Kenneth A & Johnsen, Christopher, 1981. "The Political Economy of Benefits and Costs: A Neoclassical Approach to Distributive Politics," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(4), pages 642-64, August.
  64. Lars P. Feld & John G. Matsusaka, 2000. "Budget Referendums and Government Spending: Evidence from Swiss," CESifo Working Paper Series 323, CESifo Group Munich.
  65. Solano, Paul L, 1983. "Institutional Explanations of Public Expenditures among High Income Democracies," Public Finance = Finances publiques, , vol. 38(3), pages 440-58.
  66. Inman, Robert P & Fitts, Michael A, 1990. "Political Institutions and Fiscal Policy: Evidence from the U.S. Historical Record," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 6(0), pages 79-132.
  67. Gramlich, Edward M, 1990. "U.S. Federal Budget Deficits and Gramm-Rudman-Hollings," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(2), pages 75-80, May.
  68. Ronald J. Shadbegian, 1999. "Fiscal Federalism, Collusion, and Government Size: Evidence from the States," Public Finance Review, , vol. 27(3), pages 262-281, May.
  69. Francesco Lagona & Fabio Padovano, 2007. "A nonlinear principal component analysis of the relationship between budget rules and fiscal performance in the European Union," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 130(3), pages 401-436, March.
  70. Feld, Lars P. & Kirchgassner, Gebhard, 2000. "Direct democracy, political culture, and the outcome of economic policy: a report on the Swiss experience," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 16(2), pages 287-306, June.
  71. Pommerehne, Werner W., 1978. "Institutional approaches to public expenditure : Empirical evidence from Swiss municipalities," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(2), pages 255-280, April.
  72. Pommerehne, Werner W & Weck-Hannemann, Hannelore, 1996. " Tax Rates, Tax Administration and Income Tax Evasion in Switzerland," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 88(1-2), pages 161-70, July.
  73. Barry Eichengreen and Tamim Bayoumi., 1993. "The Political Economy of Fiscal Restrictions: Implications for Europe from the United States," Center for International and Development Economics Research (CIDER) Working Papers C93-020, University of California at Berkeley.
  74. Kiewiet, D Roderick & Szakaly, Kristin, 1996. "Constitutional Limitations on Borrowing: An Analysis of State Bonded Indebtedness," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 12(1), pages 62-97, April.
  75. Zax, Jeffrey S, 1989. "Is There a Leviathan in Your Neighborhood?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(3), pages 560-67, June.
  76. 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.
  77. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521622912 is not listed on IDEAS
  78. Bergstrom, Theodore C & Goodman, Robert P, 1973. "Private Demands for Public Goods," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 63(3), pages 280-96, June.
  79. Moesen, Wim & van Cauwenberge, Philippe, 2000. " The Status of the Budget Constraint, Federalism and the Relative Size of Government: A Bureaucracy Approach," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 104(3-4), pages 207-24, September.
  80. Figlio, David N., 1998. "Short-Term Effects of a 1990s-Era Property Tax Limit: Panel Evidence on Oregon's Measure 5," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 51(n. 1), pages 55-70, March.
  81. Marlow, Michael L, 1991. " Privatization and Government Size," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 68(1-3), pages 273-76, January.
  82. Peltzman, Sam, 1992. "Voters as Fiscal Conservatives," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 107(2), pages 327-61, May.
  83. Reischauer, Robert D., 1990. "Taxes and Spending Under Gramm-Rudman-Hollings," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 43(3), pages 223-32, September.
  84. Figlio, David N. & Rueben, Kim S., 2001. "Tax limits and the qualifications of new teachers," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(1), pages 49-71, April.
  85. Henry J. Raimondo, 1989. "Leviathan and Federalism in the United States," Public Finance Review, , vol. 17(2), pages 204-215, April.
  86. Brennan, Geoffrey & Buchanan, James M., 1978. "Tax instruments as constraints on the disposition of public revenues," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(3), pages 301-318, June.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_617. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Julio Saavedra)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.