IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this paper

Targeting the Structural Balance

  • Laura dos Reis
  • Paolo Manasse
  • Ugo Panizza

This paper discusses whether a country should conduct fiscal policy by targeting a structural (or cyclically adjusted) fiscal balance. The paper is divided into three sections. The first section discusses the concept of cyclically adjusted balance (CAB) and points out practical and conceptual problems related to the interpretation and the measurement of a CAB. The second section discusses the theoretical rationale for having a fiscal rule in general and a rule defined in terms of a cyclically adjusted balance in particular. The third section discusses conceptual and practical problems with adopting fiscal rules and rules that target the structural balance.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department in its series Research Department Publications with number 4507.

in new window

Date of creation: Mar 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:idb:wpaper:4507
Contact details of provider: Postal:
1300 New York Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20577

Phone: 202-623-1000
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Fatás, Antonio & Mihov, Ilian, 1999. "Government Size and Automatic Stabilizers: International and Intranational Evidence," CEPR Discussion Papers 2259, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Kenneth Rogoff, 1985. "The Optimal Degree of Commitment to an Intermediate Monetary Target," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 100(4), pages 1169-1189.
  3. Jordi GalÌ & Roberto Perotti, 2003. "Fiscal policy and monetary integration in Europe," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 18(37), pages 533-572, October.
  4. Alberto Alesina & Guido Tabellini, 2005. "Why Is Fiscal Policy Often Procyclical?," Working Papers 297, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
  5. Graciela L. Kaminsky & Carmen M. Reinhart & Carlos A. Végh, 2005. "When It Rains, It Pours: Procyclical Capital Flows and Macroeconomic Policies," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2004, Volume 19, pages 11-82 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Guillermo A. Calvo, 2005. "Emerging Capital Markets in Turmoil: Bad Luck or Bad Policy?," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262033348, December.
  7. Walsh, Carl E, 1995. "Optimal Contracts for Central Bankers," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(1), pages 150-67, March.
  8. Dany Jaimovich & Ugo Panizza & Camil F.S. Campos, 2006. "The Unexplained Part of Public Debt," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 6705, Inter-American Development Bank.
  9. Bouthevillain, C. & Van Den Dool, G. & Langenus, G. & Mohr, M. & Momigliano, S. & Tujula, M. & De Cos, P.H. & Cour-Thimann, Philippine, 2001. "Cyclically Adjusted Budget Balances: an Alternative Approach," Papers 77, Quebec a Montreal - Recherche en gestion.
  10. Eduardo Borensztein & Paolo Mauro, 2004. "The case for GDP-indexed bonds," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 19(38), pages 165-216, 04.
  11. Paul van den Noord, 2000. "The Size and Role of Automatic Fiscal Stabilizers in the 1990s and Beyond," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 230, OECD Publishing.
  12. Darrel Cohen & Glenn Follette, 2000. "The automatic fiscal stabilizers: quietly doing their thing," Economic Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, issue Apr, pages 35-67.
  13. Athanasios Orphanides & Simon Van_Norden, 2000. "The Reliability of Output Gap Estimates in Real Time," Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers 0768, Econometric Society.
  14. Fabrizio BALASSONE & Maura FRANCESE, . "Cyclical Asymmetry in Fiscal Policy, Debt Accumulation and the Treaty of Maastricht," EcoMod2004 330600014, EcoMod.
  15. 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.
  16. Mark Aguiar & Gita Gopinath, 2004. "Emerging Market Business Cycles: The Cycle is the Trend," NBER Working Papers 10734, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Jordi Gali & Roberto Perotti, 2003. "Fiscal Policy and Monetary Integration in Europe," NBER Working Papers 9773, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Alessandra Casella, 1999. "Tradable deficit permits:efficient implementation of the Stability Pact in the European Monetary Union," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 14(29), pages 321-362, October.
  19. Milesi-Ferretti, Gian Maria, 2004. "Good, bad or ugly? On the effects of fiscal rules with creative accounting," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(1-2), pages 377-394, January.
  20. George Kopits & Steven A. Symansky, 1998. "Fiscal Policy Rules," IMF Occasional Papers 162, International Monetary Fund.
  21. Lane, Philip R, 2003. "Business Cycles and Macroeconomic Policy in Emerging Market Economies," International Finance, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 6(1), pages 89-108, Spring.
  22. Robert J. Barro & David B. Gordon, 1983. "Rules, Discretion and Reputation in a Model of Monetary Policy," NBER Working Papers 1079, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  23. Fabio Canova, 1994. "Does detrending matter for the determination of the reference cycle and the selection of turning points?," Economics Working Papers 113, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Mar 1995.
  24. Miguel Braun & Luciano di Gresia, 2003. "Towards Effective Social Insurance in Latin America: The Importance of Countercyclical Fiscal Policy," Research Department Publications 4333, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
  25. Ugo Panizza & Dany Jaimovich, 2007. "Procyclicality or Reverse Causality?," Research Department Publications 4508, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
  26. Talvi, Ernesto & Vegh, Carlos A., 2005. "Tax base variability and procyclical fiscal policy in developing countries," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 78(1), pages 156-190, October.
  27. John Cady & Anthony J. Pellechio, 2005. "Data Consistency in IMF Publications; Country Staff Reports Versus International Financial Statistics," IMF Working Papers 05/46, International Monetary Fund.
  28. Nouriel Roubini & Jeffrey Sachs, 1989. "Government Spending and Budget Deficits in the Industrial Economies," NBER Working Papers 2919, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  29. Paolo Manasse, 2005. "Deficit Limits, Budget Rules and Fiscal Policy," Macroeconomics 0509011, EconWPA.
  30. Evan C Tanner, 2003. "Fiscal Rules and Countercyclical Policy; Frank Ramsey Meets Gramm-Rudman-Hollings," IMF Working Papers 03/220, International Monetary Fund.
  31. Witold J. Henisz, 2002. "The institutional environment for infrastructure investment," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 11(2), pages 355-389.
  32. Zvi Hercowitz & Michel Strawczynski, 2004. "Cyclical Ratcheting in Government Spending: Evidence from the OECD," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 86(1), pages 353-361, February.
  33. André Sapir & Marco Buti, 1998. "Economic policy in EMU," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/8078, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  34. Philip R. Lane & Aaron Tornell, 1999. "The Voracity Effect," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(1), pages 22-46, March.
  35. Gabriela Inchauste & Bernardin Akitoby & Benedict J. Clements & Sanjeev Gupta, 2004. "The Cyclical and Long-Term Behavior of Government Expenditures in Developing Countries," IMF Working Papers 04/202, International Monetary Fund.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:idb:wpaper:4507. 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: (Monica Bazan)

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 references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link 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 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.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.