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The problem of debt stabilization: An alternative approach


  • Claudio Sardoni

    () (Department of Economics, Sapienza University of Rome)


The paper deals with the problems of fiscal sustainability and the stabilization of the public debt. It criticizes the mainstream approach to these issues and argues that an approach inspired by Domar's contribution is preferable. While mainstream analyses of debt stabilization are based on the hypothesis that the economy's growth rate is independent of public spending and its composition, in the paper this hypothesis is removed. The growth rate is made dependent on the composition of public spending. In this analytical context, ensuring the stabilization of the ratio of the public debt to the GDP does not necessarily requires running a primary surplus, which instead is the fundamental mainstream conclusion when the interest rate on the debt is higher than the economy's growth rate. The debt ratio can be stabilized through increases in the economy's growth rate caused by adequate changes in the composition of public expenditure.

Suggested Citation

  • Claudio Sardoni, 2009. "The problem of debt stabilization: An alternative approach," Working Papers - Dipartimento di Economia 6, Dipartimento di Economia, Sapienza University of Rome, revised 2009.
  • Handle: RePEc:des:wpaper:6

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    JEL classification:

    • E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy
    • H62 - Public Economics - - National Budget, Deficit, and Debt - - - Deficit; Surplus
    • O4 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity

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