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Legislative Malapportionment and the Politicization of Germany's Intergovernmental Transfer System

Legislative bargaining theory suggests that fiscal transfers among member states of a federation are determined to a substantial degree by political bargaining powers. Malapportionment of the states' population in the legislature is claimed to lead to disproportionally higher benefits of overrepresented states. The present paper analyses empirically the distribution of fiscal transfers in Germany's intergovernmental transfer system over the period 1970-2002. It can be shown that overrepresented states in the upper house receive disproportionate shares of transfers, while malapportionment in the lower house does not seem to matter. We also find empirical evidence that overrepresentation became more important over time.

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Paper provided by Institut für Angewandte Wirtschaftsforschung (IAW) in its series IAW Discussion Papers with number 19.

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Length: 35 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iaw:iawdip:19
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  1. Salvador BARBER?Author-Email: & Matthew O. JACKSON, 2003. "On the Weights of Nations: Assigning Voting Weights in a Heterogenous Union," UFAE and IAE Working Papers 597.03, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC).
  2. Brian Knight, 2004. "Legislative Representation, Bargaining Power, and the Distribution of Federal Funds: Evidence from the U.S. Senate," NBER Working Papers 10385, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Persson, Torsten & Tabellini , Guido, 1997. "Political Economics and Macroeconomic Policy," Seminar Papers 630, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
  4. Hans Pitlik, 2004. "Zur Politischen Rationalitaet der Finanzausgleichsreform in Deutschland," Diskussionspapiere aus dem Institut für Volkswirtschaftslehre der Universität Hohenheim 239/2004, Department of Economics, University of Hohenheim, Germany.
  5. Grossman, Philip J, 1994. " A Political Theory of Intergovernmental Grants," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 78(3-4), pages 295-303, March.
  6. Homburg, Stefan, 1997. "Ursachen und Wirkungen eines zwischenstaatlichen Finanzausgleichs," EconStor Open Access Articles, ZBW - German National Library of Economics, pages 61-95.
  7. Lenk, Thomas, 1999. "Bei der Reform der Finanzverfassung die neuen Bundesländer nicht vergessen!," Wirtschaftsdienst – Zeitschrift für Wirtschaftspolitik (1998 - 2007), ZBW – German National Library of Economics / Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, vol. 79(3), pages 164-173.
  8. repec:bla:restud:v:58:y:1991:i:2:p:277-97 is not listed on IDEAS
  9. Gary Hoover & Paul Pecorino, 2005. "The Political Determinants of Federal Expenditure at the State Level," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 123(1), pages 95-113, April.
  10. Wallace E. Oates, 1999. "An Essay on Fiscal Federalism," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(3), pages 1120-1149, September.
  11. Atlas, Cary M, et al, 1995. "Slicing the Federal Government Net Spending Pie: Who Wins, Who Loses, and Why," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(3), pages 624-29, June.
  12. Altemeier, Jens, 1999. "Föderale Finanzbeziehungen unter Anpassungsdruck: Verteilungskonflikte in der Verhandlungsdemokratie," Schriften aus dem Max-Planck-Institut für Gesellschaftsforschung Köln, Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies, volume 38, number 38.
  13. James M. Snyder Jr. & Michael M. Ting & Stephen Ansolabehere, 2005. "Legislative Bargaining under Weighted Voting," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(4), pages 981-1004, September.
  14. Homburg, Stefan, 1994. "Anreizwirkungen des deutschen Finanzausgleichs," EconStor Open Access Articles, ZBW - German National Library of Economics, pages 312-330..
  15. Alberto Porto & Pablo Sanguinetti, 2001. "Political Determinants of Intergovernmental Grants: Evidence From Argentina," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 13(3), pages 237-256, November.
  16. Pitlik, Hans & Schmid, Gunther & Strotmann, Harald, 2001. " Bargaining Power of Smaller States in Germany's Landerfinanzausgleich 1979-90," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 109(1-2), pages 183-201, October.
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