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Cyclicality of Fiscal Policy: Permanent and Transitory Shocks

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  • Strawczynski, Michel
  • Zeira, Joseph

Abstract

This paper examines the optimal reaction of fiscal policy to permanent and transitory shocks to output in a model of tax and public consumption smoothing. The model predicts that optimal reaction of public expenditures and deficits to transitory shocks should be countercyclical, while optimal reaction to permanent shocks should be a-cyclical. Using the Blanchard and Quah (1989) methodology for identifying permanent and transitory shocks, we test these predictions for a sample of 22 OECD countries over the years 1963-2006. We find that both expenditures and deficits are countercyclical to transitory shocks, mainly through public transfers and mainly in recessions. We find that government investment is pro-cyclical with respect to permanent shocks, but total expenditures are not.

Suggested Citation

  • Strawczynski, Michel & Zeira, Joseph, 2009. "Cyclicality of Fiscal Policy: Permanent and Transitory Shocks," CEPR Discussion Papers 7271, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:7271
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Balázs Égert, 2014. "Fiscal policy reaction to the cycle in the OECD: pro- or counter-cyclical?," Mondes en développement, De Boeck Université, vol. 0(3), pages 35-52.
    2. Ashima Goyal & Bhavyaa Sharma, 2015. "Government expenditure in India: Composition, cyclicality and multipliers," Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai Working Papers 2015-032, Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai, India.
    3. Neely, Christopher J. & Rapach, David E., 2015. "Common Fluctuations in OECD Budget Balances," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, vol. 97(2), pages 109-132.
    4. Michel Strawczynski & Joseph Zeira, 2013. "Procyclicality of Fiscal Policy in Emerging Countries: The Cycle is the Trend," Central Banking, Analysis, and Economic Policies Book Series,in: Luis Felipe Céspedes & Jordi Galí (ed.), Fiscal Policy and Macroeconomic Performance, edition 1, volume 17, chapter 11, pages 427-466 Central Bank of Chile.
    5. Francisco de Castro & Francisco Martí & Antonio Montesinos & Javier J. Pérez & A. Jesús Sánchez-Fuentes, 2014. "Fiscal policies in Spain: Main stylises facts revisited," Working Papers 1408, Banco de España;Working Papers Homepage.
    6. Brückner, Markus & Gradstein, Mark, 2014. "Government spending cyclicality: Evidence from transitory and persistent shocks in developing countries," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 111(C), pages 107-116.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Business Cycles; Fiscal Policy; Permanent and Transitory Shocks;

    JEL classification:

    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • E61 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Policy Objectives; Policy Designs and Consistency; Policy Coordination
    • E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy

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