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Economic Freedom and Growth:Decomposing the Effects

  • Carlsson, Fredrik


    (Department of Economics, School of Economics and Commercial Law, Göteborg University)

  • Lundström, Susanna

    (Department of Economics, School of Economics and Commercial Law, Göteborg University)

Most studies of the relation between economic freedom and growth of GDP have found a positive relation. One problem in this area is the choice of economic freedom measure. A single measure does notreflect the complex economic environment and a highly aggregated index makes it difficult to draw policy conclusions. In this paper we investigate what specific types of economic freedom measures that are important for growth. The robustness of the results is carefully analysed since the potential problem with multicollinearity is one of the negative effects of decomposing an index. The results show that economic freedom does matter for growth. This does not mean that increasing economic freedom, definedin general terms, is good for economic growth since some of the categories in the index are insignificant and some of the significant variables have negative effects.

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Paper provided by University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers in Economics with number 33.

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Length: 17 pages
Date of creation: 02 Feb 2001
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in Public Choice, 2002, pages 335-344.
Handle: RePEc:hhs:gunwpe:0033
Contact details of provider: Postal: Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, University of Gothenburg, Box 640, SE 405 30 GÖTEBORG, Sweden
Phone: 031-773 10 00
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  1. Sala-i-Martin, Xavier, 1997. "I Just Ran Two Million Regressions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(2), pages 178-83, May.
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  4. De Vanssay, Xavier & Spindler, Z A, 1994. " Freedom and Growth: Do Constitutions Matter?," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 78(3-4), pages 359-72, March.
  5. Barro, R.J., 1989. "Economic Growth In A Cross Section Of Countries," RCER Working Papers 201, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
  6. James D. Gwartney & Robert A. Lawson & Randall G. Holcombe, 1999. "Economic Freedom and the Environment for Economic Growth," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 155(4), pages 643-, December.
  7. Haan, Jakob de & Sturm, Jan-Egbert, 1999. "On the relationship between economic freedom and economic growth," CCSO Working Papers 199903, University of Groningen, CCSO Centre for Economic Research.
  8. Barro, Robert J, 1996. " Democracy and Growth," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 1(1), pages 1-27, March.
  9. Robert J. Barro, 1988. "Government Spending in a Simple Model of Endogenous Growth," NBER Working Papers 2588, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Levine, Ross & Renelt, David, 1992. "A Sensitivity Analysis of Cross-Country Growth Regressions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(4), pages 942-63, September.
  11. Kneller, Richard & Bleaney, Michael F. & Gemmell, Norman, 1999. "Fiscal policy and growth: evidence from OECD countries," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 74(2), pages 171-190, November.
  12. Scully, Gerald W & Slottje, Daniel J, 1991. " Ranking Economic Liberty across Countries," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 69(2), pages 121-52, February.
  13. Stephen Knack & Philip Keefer, 1995. "Institutions And Economic Performance: Cross-Country Tests Using Alternative Institutional Measures," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 7(3), pages 207-227, November.
  14. Torstensson, Johan, 1994. "Property Rights and Economic Growth: An Empirical Study," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(2), pages 231-47.
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