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Vountary matching grants can forestall social dumping

  • Jacques H. DREZE

    (UNIVERSITE CATHOLIQUE DE LOUVAIN, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE))

  • Charles FIGUIERES
  • Jean, HINDRIKS

    (UNIVERSITE CATHOLIQUE DE LOUVAIN, Department of Economics)

The European economic integration leads to increasing mobility of factors, thereby threatening the stability of social transfer programs. This paper investigates the possibility to achieve by means of voluntary matching grants both the optimal allocation of factors and the optimal level of redistribution in the presence of factor mobility. We use a fiscal competition model a la Wildasin (1991) in which states differ in their technologies and preferences for redistribution. We first investigate a simple process in which the regulatory authority progressively raises the matchning grants sto the district choosing the lowest transfer and all districts respond optimally to the resulting change in transfers all around. This process is shown to increase total production and the level of redistribution. However, it does not guarantee that all districts gain, nor that an efficient level of redistribution is attained. Assuming complete information among districts, we first derive the willingness of each district to match the contribution of other districts and we show that the aggregate willingness to pay for matching rates converges to zero when both the efficient level of redistribution and the efficient outcome and guarantee that everyone will gain.

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Paper provided by Université catholique de Louvain, Département des Sciences Economiques in its series Discussion Papers (ECON - Département des Sciences Economiques) with number 2006063.

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Length: 22
Date of creation: 01 Nov 2006
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ctl:louvec:2006063
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  1. Hans-Werner Sinn, 2004. "The New Systems Competition," Perspektiven der Wirtschaftspolitik, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 5(1), pages 23-38, 02.
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  3. WILDASIN, David, . "Nash equilibria in models of fiscal competition," CORE Discussion Papers RP -804, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  4. HINDRIKS, Jean & MYLES, Gareth D., 2001. "Strategic inter-regional transfers," CORE Discussion Papers 2001004, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
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  8. David E. Wildasin, 2000. "Factor mobility and fiscal policy in the EU: policy issues and analytical approaches," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 15(31), pages 337-378, October.
  9. Charles Figuieres & Jean Hindriks, 2001. "Matching Grants and Ricardian Equivalence," Working Papers 440, Queen Mary University of London, School of Economics and Finance.
  10. Varian, H,R., 1991. "A Solution to the Problem of Externalities when Agents are Well-Informed," Papers 10, Michigan - Center for Research on Economic & Social Theory.
  11. Brown, Charles C. & Oates, Wallace E., 1987. "Assistance to the poor in a federal system," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 307-330, April.
  12. Andreas Pfingsten & Andreas Wagener, 1997. "Centralized vs. Decentralized Redistribution: A Case for Interregional Transfer Mechanisms," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 4(4), pages 429-451, November.
  13. Dreze, J H & Greenberg, J, 1980. "Hedonic Coalitions: Optimality and Stability," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(4), pages 987-1003, May.
  14. Wildasin, David E, 1991. "Income Redistribution in a Common Labor Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(4), pages 757-74, September.
  15. Charles Figuieres & Jean Hindriks & Gareth D. Myles, 2004. "Revenue Sharing versus Expenditure Sharing in a Federal System," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 11(2), pages 155-174, 03.
  16. Hindriks, J., 1998. "Tax versus Transfer Competition," Discussion Papers 9808, Exeter University, Department of Economics.
  17. Guttman, Joel M, 1978. "Understanding Collective Action: Matching Behavior," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 68(2), pages 251-55, May.
  18. Kevin Roberts, 1999. "Dynamic voting in clubs," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 19349, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
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