IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/emo/wp2003/0614.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Federal, State, and Local Governments: Evaluating Their Separate Roles in U.S. Growth

Author

Listed:
  • Matthew J. Higgins
  • Daniel Levy
  • Andrew T. Young

Abstract

We use U.S. county-level data (3,058 observations) from 1970 to 1998 to explore the relationship between economic growth and the size of government at three levels: federal, state, and local. Using 3SLS-IV estimation we find that the size of federal, state, and local government all either negatively correlate with or are uncorrelated with economic growth. We find no evidence that government is more efficient at more or less decentralized levels. Furthermore, while we cannot separate out the productive and redistributive services of government, we document that the county-level income distribution became slightly wider from 1970 to 1998. Our findings suggest that a release of government-employed labor inputs to the private sector would be growth-enhancing.

Suggested Citation

  • Matthew J. Higgins & Daniel Levy & Andrew T. Young, 2006. "Federal, State, and Local Governments: Evaluating Their Separate Roles in U.S. Growth," Emory Economics 0614, Department of Economics, Emory University (Atlanta).
  • Handle: RePEc:emo:wp2003:0614
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://economics.emory.edu/home/assets/workingpapers/levy_06_14_paper.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Christopher F Baum & Mark E. Schaffer & Steven Stillman, 2003. "Instrumental variables and GMM: Estimation and testing," Stata Journal, StataCorp LP, vol. 3(1), pages 1-31, March.
    2. Agell, Jonas & Lindh, Thomas & Ohlsson, Henry, 1997. "Growth and the public sector: A critical review essay," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 13(1), pages 33-52, February.
    3. Aschauer, David Alan, 1989. "Is public expenditure productive?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(2), pages 177-200, March.
    4. Rappaport, Jordan & Sachs, Jeffrey D, 2003. "The United States as a Coastal Nation," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 8(1), pages 5-46, March.
    5. Jordan Rappaport, 1999. "Local Growth Empirics," CID Working Papers 23, Center for International Development at Harvard University.
    6. Jeffrey M Wooldridge, 2010. "Econometric Analysis of Cross Section and Panel Data," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 2, volume 1, number 0262232588, January.
    7. Josep Lluís Carrion-i-Silvestre & Marta Espasa & Toni Mora, 2008. "Fiscal Decentralization and Economic Growth in Spain," Public Finance Review, , vol. 36(2), pages 194-218, March.
    8. Brueckner, Jan K., 2006. "Fiscal federalism and economic growth," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(10-11), pages 2107-2120, November.
    9. Matthew Higgins & Daniel Levy & Andrew Young, 2003. "Growth and Convergence across the U.S.: Evidence from County-level Data," Emory Economics 0306, Department of Economics, Emory University (Atlanta).
    10. Martinez-Vazquez, Jorge & McNab, Robert M., 2003. "Fiscal Decentralization and Economic Growth," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 31(9), pages 1597-1616, September.
    11. Evans, Paul & Karras, Georgios, 1994. "Are Government Activities Productive? Evidence from a Panel of U.S. States," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 76(1), pages 1-11, February.
    12. James H. Stock & Motohiro Yogo, 2002. "Testing for Weak Instruments in Linear IV Regression," NBER Technical Working Papers 0284, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    13. Sala-i-Martin, Xavier, 1997. "I Just Ran Two Million Regressions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(2), pages 178-183, May.
    14. Douglas Staiger & James H. Stock, 1997. "Instrumental Variables Regression with Weak Instruments," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(3), pages 557-586, May.
    15. Xie, Danyang & Zou, Heng-fu & Davoodi, Hamid, 1999. "Fiscal Decentralization and Economic Growth in the United States," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(2), pages 228-239, March.
    16. Atkinson, Anthony B., 1995. "The Welfare State and Economic Performance," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 48(2), pages 171-98, June.
    17. Davoodi, Hamid & Zou, Heng-fu, 1998. "Fiscal Decentralization and Economic Growth: A Cross-Country Study," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 244-257, March.
    18. Zhang, Tao & Zou, Heng-fu, 1998. "Fiscal decentralization, public spending, and economic growth in China," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(2), pages 221-240, February.
    19. Holtz-Eakin, Douglas, 1994. "Public-Sector Capital and the Productivity Puzzle," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 76(1), pages 12-21, February.
    20. Baldacci, Emanuele & Hillman, Arye L. & Kojo, Naoko C., 2004. "Growth, governance, and fiscal policy transmission channels in low-income countries," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 20(3), pages 517-549, September.
    21. Lynde, Catherine & Richmond, J, 1993. "Public Capital and Total Factor Productivity," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 34(2), pages 401-414, May.
    22. Rappaport, Jordan, 2005. "How does labor mobility affect income convergence?," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 29(3), pages 567-581, March.
    23. Stansel, Dean, 2005. "Local decentralization and local economic growth: A cross-sectional examination of US metropolitan areas," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(1), pages 55-72, January.
    24. Caselli, Francesco & Esquivel, Gerardo & Lefort, Fernando, 1996. "Reopening the Convergence Debate: A New Look at Cross-Country Growth Empirics," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 1(3), pages 363-389, September.
    25. Higgins, Matthew & Young, Andrew & Levy, Daniel, 2007. "Robust Correlates of County-Level Growth in the U.S," MPRA Paper 3088, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    26. Garcia-Mila, Teresa & McGuire, Therese J & Porter, Robert H, 1996. "The Effect of Public Capital in State-Level Production Functions Reconsidered," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 78(1), pages 177-180, February.
    27. Wallace E. Oates, 1999. "An Essay on Fiscal Federalism," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(3), pages 1120-1149, September.
    28. John Shea, 1997. "Instrument Relevance in Multivariate Linear Models: A Simple Measure," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 79(2), pages 348-352, May.
    29. Joel Slemrod, 1995. "What Do Cross-Country Studies Teach about Government Involvement, Prosperity, and Economic Growth?," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 26(2), pages 373-431.
    30. Atkinson, Anthony B., 1995. "The Welfare State and Economic Performance," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association;National Tax Journal, vol. 48(2), pages 171-198, June.
    31. Shioji, Etsuro, 2001. "Public Capital and Economic Growth: A Convergence Approach," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 6(3), pages 205-227, September.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Shanaka Herath, 2009. "The Size of the Government and Economic Growth: An Empirical Study of Sri Lanka," SRE-Disc sre-disc-2009_08, Institute for Multilevel Governance and Development, Department of Socioeconomics, Vienna University of Economics and Business.
    2. Bologna, Jamie & Young, Andrew T. & Lacombe, Donald J., 2016. "A spatial analysis of incomes and institutional quality: evidence from US metropolitan areas," Journal of Institutional Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 12(01), pages 191-216, March.
    3. Young, Andrew T. & Higgins, Matthew J. & Levy, Daniel, 2013. "Heterogeneous convergence," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 120(2), pages 238-241.
    4. Snir, Avichai & Levy, Daniel, 2010. "Economic Growth in the Potterian Economy," EconStor Open Access Articles, ZBW - German National Library of Economics, pages 211-236.
    5. Timothy Komarek & Scott Loveridge, 2015. "Firm Sizes And Economic Development: Estimating Long-Term Effects On U.S. County Growth, 1990–2000," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 55(2), pages 262-279, March.
    6. Travis Wiseman & Andrew Young, 2011. "Economic Freedom, Entrepreneurship, & Income Levels: Some US State-Level Empirics," Working Papers 11-03, Department of Economics, West Virginia University.
    7. Ma, Xufei & Ding, Zhujun & Yuan, Lin, 2016. "Subnational institutions, political capital, and the internationalization of entrepreneurial firms in emerging economies," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 51(5), pages 843-854.
    8. Shanaka Herath, 2012. "Size Of Government And Economic Growth: A Nonlinear Analysis," Economic Annals, Faculty of Economics, University of Belgrade, vol. 57(194), pages 7-30, July - Se.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • H50 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - General
    • O47 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Empirical Studies of Economic Growth; Aggregate Productivity; Cross-Country Output Convergence
    • H70 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - General
    • R11 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Regional Economic Activity: Growth, Development, Environmental Issues, and Changes

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:emo:wp2003:0614. 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: (Sue Mialon). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/deemous.html .

    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 CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service 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.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.