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Measuring the Impact of Fiscal Policy in the Face of Anticipation: A Structural VAR Approach

Listed author(s):
  • Mertens, Karel
  • Ravn, Morten O

Empirical estimates of the impact of government spending shocks disagree on central issues such as the size of output multipliers and the responses of consumption and the real wage. One explanation for the disagreement is that fiscal shocks are often anticipated. Due to misspecification of the information set, anticipation effects may invalidate SVAR estimates of impulse responses. We use economic theory to derive a fiscal SVAR estimator that is applicable when fiscal shocks are anticipated. We study its properties and apply it to US data. We fail to find evidence that anticipation effects overturn the existing findings from the fiscal SVAR literature.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 7423.

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Date of creation: Aug 2009
Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:7423
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  1. Andrew Mountford & Harald Uhlig, 2009. "What are the effects of fiscal policy shocks?," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 24(6), pages 960-992.
  2. Lippi, Marco & Reichlin, Lucrezia, 1994. "VAR analysis, nonfundamental representations, blaschke matrices," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 63(1), pages 307-325, July.
  3. Domenico Giannone & Lucrezia Reichlin, 2006. "Does information help recovering structural shocks from past observations?," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 4(2-3), pages 455-465, 04-05.
  4. Lawrence J. Christiano & Cosmin Ilut & Roberto Motto & Massimo Rostagno, 2010. "Monetary policy and stock market booms," Proceedings - Economic Policy Symposium - Jackson Hole, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, pages 85-145.
  5. Karel Mertens & Morten O. Ravn, 2012. "Empirical Evidence on the Aggregate Effects of Anticipated and Unanticipated US Tax Policy Shocks," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 4(2), pages 145-181, May.
  6. Morten Ravn & Stephanie Schmitt-Grohé & Martín Uribe, 2006. "Deep Habits," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 73(1), pages 195-218.
  7. Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum & Robert Vigfusson, 2007. "Assessing Structural VARs," NBER Chapters,in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2006, Volume 21, pages 1-106 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Giancarlo Corsetti & André Meier & Gernot J. Müller, 2012. "Fiscal Stimulus with Spending Reversals," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 94(4), pages 878-895, November.
  9. Stephanie Schmitt-Grohe & Martin Uribe, 2008. "What's News in Business Cycles," NBER Working Papers 14215, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Eric M. Leeper & Todd B. Walker & Shu-Chun Susan Yang, 2008. "Fiscal Foresight: Analytics and Econometrics," NBER Working Papers 14028, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Ravn, Morten O & Schmitt-Grohé, Stephanie & Uribe, Martín, 2007. "Explaining the Effects of Government Spending Shocks on Consumption and the Real Exchange Rate," CEPR Discussion Papers 6541, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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