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Transparency in state debt disclosure

Listed author(s):
  • Zhao, Bo

    ()

    (Federal Reserve Bank of Boston)

  • Wang, Wen

    ()

    (Rutgers University)

Registered author(s):

We develop a new measure of relative debt transparency by comparing the amount of state debt reported in the annual Census survey and the amount reported in the statistical section of the state Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR). GASB 44 requires states to start reporting their total debt in the CAFR statistical section in FY 2006. However, states are allowed to use accounting choices to exclude some dependent agencies’ debt, which contributes to a gap between the two data sources. The regression results suggest that the gap tends to increase when states face greater fiscal stress or less political competition. Such patterns are not found in the pre-GASB 44 period.

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Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Boston in its series Working Papers with number 17-10.

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Length: 42 pages
Date of creation: 01 Oct 2017
Handle: RePEc:fip:fedbwp:17-10
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  1. repec:cup:apsrev:v:88:y:1994:i:04:p:811-828_09 is not listed on IDEAS
  2. Poterba, James M, 1994. "State Responses to Fiscal Crises: The Effects of Budgetary Institutions and Politics," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(4), pages 799-821, August.
  3. repec:bla:joares:v:24:y:1986:i:2:p:412-421 is not listed on IDEAS
  4. Daniel Albalate del Sol, 2013. "The institutional, economic and social determinants of local government transparency," Journal of Economic Policy Reform, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 16(1), pages 90-107, March.
  5. Timothy C. Irwin, 2015. "Defining The Government'S Debt And Deficit," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 29(4), pages 711-732, September.
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  8. repec:bla:joares:v:22:y:1984:i:1:p:126-144 is not listed on IDEAS
  9. Yilin Hou, 2005. "Fiscal Reserves and State Own-Source Expenditure in Downturn Years," Public Finance Review, , vol. 33(1), pages 117-144, January.
  10. Nancy W. Hudspeth & David F. Merriman & Richard F. Dye & Andrew W. Crosby, 2015. "Do Troubled Times Invite Cloudy Budget Reporting? The Determinants of General Fund Expenditure Share in U.S. States," Public Budgeting & Finance, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 35(4), pages 68-89, December.
  11. Carpenter, Vivian L., 1991. "The influence of political competition on the decision to adopt GAAP," Journal of Accounting and Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 10(2), pages 105-134.
  12. Wehner, Joachim & de Renzio, Paolo, 2013. "Citizens, Legislators, and Executive Disclosure: The Political Determinants of Fiscal Transparency," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 96-108.
  13. Cheng, Rita Hartung, 1992. "An empirical analysis of theories on factors influencing state government accounting disclosure," Journal of Accounting and Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 11(1), pages 1-42.
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