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An Economic Analysis of Voting in Sweden

  • Jordahl, Henrik

    (Department of Economics)

This paper presents a theoretical model of rational retrospective voting, which is tested empirically on pooled cross-sectional and panel data from the Swedish Election Studies between 1985 and 1994 supplemented with time series on inflation and unemployment. Compared with the cross-sectional estimates, the panel estimates indicate a relatively greater impact of macroeconomic variables on the individual vote. The principal finding is, however, that microeconomic variables influence the vote about as much as macroeconomic variables do. In consequence, self-interest appears to be an important part of an adequate understanding of economic voting in Sweden. Regarding the determination of election outcomes, macroeconomic variables have been more influential.

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Paper provided by Uppsala University, Department of Economics in its series Working Paper Series with number 2001:18.

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Length: 42 pages
Date of creation: 11 Oct 2001
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in Public Choice, 2006, pages 251-265.
Handle: RePEc:hhs:uunewp:2001_018
Contact details of provider: Postal: Department of Economics, Uppsala University, P. O. Box 513, SE-751 20 Uppsala, Sweden
Phone: + 46 18 471 25 00
Fax: + 46 18 471 14 78
Web page: http://www.nek.uu.se/Email:


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  1. Jeff Fuhrer & George Moore, 1993. "Inflation persistence," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Mar.
  2. Rogoff, Kenneth & Sibert, Anne, 1988. "Elections and Macroeconomic Policy Cycles," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 55(1), pages 1-16, January.
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  7. Olivier J. Blanchard & Lawrence H. Summers, 1986. "Hysteresis and the European Unemployment Problem," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1986, Volume 1, pages 15-90 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. John Ferejohn, 1986. "Incumbent performance and electoral control," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 50(1), pages 5-25, January.
  9. Layard, Richard & Nickell, Stephen & Jackman, Richard, 2005. "Unemployment: Macroeconomic Performance and the Labour Market," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199279173, March.
  10. Jonung, Lars & Wadensjo, Eskil, 1979. " The Effect of Unemployment, Inflation and Real Income Growth on Government Popularity in Sweden," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 81(2), pages 343-53.
  11. Kenneth Rogoff, 1987. "Equilibrium Political Budget Cycles," NBER Working Papers 2428, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Nannestad, Peter & Paldam, Martin, 1994. " The VP-Function: A Survey of the Literature on Vote and Popularity Functions after 25 Years," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 79(3-4), pages 213-45, June.
  13. Harrington, Joseph Jr., 1992. "The role of party reputation in the formation of policy," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(1), pages 107-121, October.
  14. Chamberlain, Gary, 1980. "Analysis of Covariance with Qualitative Data," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(1), pages 225-38, January.
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  16. Alesina, Alberto & Tabellini, Guido, 1988. "Credibility and politics," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 32(2-3), pages 542-550, March.
  17. Arulampalam, Wiji & Booth, Alison L & Taylor, Mark P, 2000. "Unemployment Persistence," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 52(1), pages 24-50, January.
  18. Johansson, Eva, 1999. "Intergovernmental Grants as a Tactical Instrument: Some Empirical Evidence from Swedish Municipalities," Working Paper Series 1999:10, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
  19. Alberto Alesina & Nouriel Roubini & Gerald D. Cohen, 1997. "Political Cycles and the Macroeconomy," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262510944, August.
  20. Lindbeck, Assar, 1976. "Stabilization Policy in Open Economies with Endogenous Politicians," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 66(2), pages 1-19, May.
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