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Searching for Non-Keynesian Effects of Fiscal Policy

  • Francesco Giavazzi
  • Tullio Jappelli
  • Marco Pagano

We search for the circumstances in which the response of national saving to fiscal policy contradicts conventional Keynesian predictions, using data from 18 OECD countries. The data suggest that non-Keynesian effects are associated with large and persistent fiscal impulses. Such responses can be traced to changes in taxes and transfers, more than to changes in government consumption, and are stronger for fiscal contractions than expansions. During large contractions an increase in taxes has no effect on national saving. High or rapidly growing public debt is not a good predictor of non-Keynesian effects. Finally, the composition of the fiscal impulse matters: the non-Keynesian effects of a large fiscal contraction are enhanced when this is carried out primarily by raising taxes.

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Paper provided by IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University in its series Working Papers with number 136.

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Handle: RePEc:igi:igierp:136
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  1. Perotti, Roberto, 1996. "Fiscal Consolidation in Europe: Composition Matters," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 105-10, May.
  2. Francesco Giavazzi & Marco Pagano, 1990. "Can Severe Fiscal Contractions Be Expansionary? Tales of Two Small European Countries," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1990, Volume 5, pages 75-122 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Alberto Alesina & Roberto Perotti, 1996. "Fiscal Adjustments in OECD Countries: Composition and Macroeconomic Effects," NBER Working Papers 5730, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Bertola, Giuseppe & Drazen, Allan, 1993. "Trigger Points and Budget Cuts: Explaining the Effects of Fiscal Austerity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(1), pages 11-26, March.
  5. Bayoumi, Tamim & Masson, Paul R & Samiei, Hossein, 1996. "International Evidence on the Determinants of Saving," CEPR Discussion Papers 1368, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Seater, John J, 1993. "Ricardian Equivalence," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 31(1), pages 142-90, March.
  7. Alesina, Alberto F & Angeloni, Ignazio & Etro, Federico, 2003. "International Unions," CEPR Discussion Papers 3913, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Robert F. Westcott & C. John McDermott, 1996. "An Empirical Analysis of Fiscal Adjustments," IMF Working Papers 96/59, International Monetary Fund.
  9. Christopher D. Carroll & David N. Weil, 1993. "Saving and Growth: A Reinterpretation," NBER Working Papers 4470, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Jappelli, Tullio & Pagano, Marco, 1992. "Saving, Growth and Liquidity Constraints," CEPR Discussion Papers 662, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  11. Feldstein, Martin, 1982. "Government deficits and aggregate demand," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(1), pages 1-20.
  12. Sutherland, Alan, 1997. "Fiscal crises and aggregate demand: can high public debt reverse the effects of fiscal policy?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(2), pages 147-162, August.
  13. Giuseppe Nicoletti, 1988. "Private Consumption, Inflation and the "Debt Neutrality Hypothesis": The Case of Eight OECD Countries," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 50, OECD Publishing.
  14. Giavazzi, Francesco & Pagano, Marco, 1995. "Non-Keynesian Effects of Fiscal Policy Changes: International Evidence and the Swedish Experience," CEPR Discussion Papers 1284, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  15. B. Douglas Bernheim, 1987. "Ricardian Equivalence: An Evaluation of Theory and Evidence," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1987, Volume 2, pages 263-316 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Alberto Alesina & Roberto Perotti, 1997. "Fiscal Adjustments in OECD Countries: Composition and Macroeconomic Effects," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 44(2), pages 210-248, June.
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