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The Fiscal Theory of the Price Level: Identifying Restrictions and Empirical Evidence

  • Luca Sala

This paper aims to test some implications of the fiscal theory of the price level (FTPL). We develop a model similar to Leeper (1991) and Woodford (1996), but extended so to generate real effects of fiscal policy also in the "Ricardian" regime, via an OLG demographic structure. We test on the data the predictions of the FTPL as incorporated in the model. We find that the US fiscal policy in the period 1960-1979 can be classified as "Non-Ricardian", while it is "Ricardian" since 1990. According to our analysis, the fiscal theory of the price level characterizes one phase of the post-war US history.

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Paper provided by IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University in its series Working Papers with number 257.

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Date of creation: 2004
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:igi:igierp:257
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  1. Clarida, R. & Gali, J. & Gertler, M., 1998. "Monetary Policy Rules and Macroeconomic Stability: Evidence and some Theory," Working Papers 98-01, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  2. Carlo A. Favero & Tommaso Monacelli, 2003. "Monetary-Fiscal Mix and Inflation Performance: Evidence from the U.S," Working Papers 234, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
  3. Michael Woodford, 2001. "Fiscal Requirements for Price Stability," NBER Working Papers 8072, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Olivier J. Blanchard & Philippe Weil, 2001. "Dynamic Efficiency, the Riskless Rate, and Debt Ponzi Games under Uncertainty," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/8607, Sciences Po.
  5. repec:tpr:qjecon:v:113:y:1998:i:3:p:949-963 is not listed on IDEAS
  6. Leeper, Eric M., 1991. "Equilibria under 'active' and 'passive' monetary and fiscal policies," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 129-147, February.
  7. Thomas J. Sargent & Neil Wallace, 1981. "Some unpleasant monetarist arithmetic," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, issue Fall.
  8. Canzoneri, Matthew B & Cumby, Robert & Diba, Behzad, 1998. "Is the Price Level Determined by the Needs of Fiscal Solvency?," CEPR Discussion Papers 1772, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. Blanchard, Olivier Jean & Kahn, Charles M, 1980. "The Solution of Linear Difference Models under Rational Expectations," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(5), pages 1305-11, July.
  10. Woodford, Michael, 1994. "Monetary Policy and Price Level Determinacy in a Cash-in-Advance Economy," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 4(3), pages 345-80.
  11. Michael Woodford, 1995. "Price Level Determinacy Without Control of a Monetary Aggregate," NBER Working Papers 5204, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Eric M. Leeper, 1989. "Policy rules, information and fiscal effects in a "Ricardian" model," International Finance Discussion Papers 360, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  13. Atsushi Inoue & Lutz Kilian, 2002. "Bootstrapping Smooth Functions of Slope Parameters and Innovation Variances in VAR (∞) Models," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 43(2), pages 309-332, May.
  14. Sims, Christopher A, 1994. "A Simple Model for Study of the Determination of the Price Level and the Interaction of Monetary and Fiscal Policy," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 4(3), pages 381-99.
  15. John H. Cochrane, 1998. "A Frictionless View of U.S. Inflation," CRSP working papers 479, Center for Research in Security Prices, Graduate School of Business, University of Chicago.
  16. Narayana R. Kocherlakota & Christopher Phelan, 1999. "Explaining the fiscal theory of the price level," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, issue Fall, pages 14-23.
  17. Fabio Ghironi, 2000. "Towards new open economy macroeconometrics," Staff Reports 100, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  18. Smets, Frank & Wouters, Raf, 2002. "Openness, imperfect exchange rate pass-through and monetary policy," Working Paper Series 0128, European Central Bank.
  19. Schmitt-Grohé, Stephanie & Uribe, Martín, 2004. "Optimal Simple and Implementable Monetary and Fiscal Rules," CEPR Discussion Papers 4334, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  20. Lawrence J. Christiano & Terry J. Fitzgerald, 2000. "Understanding the Fiscal Theory of the Price Level," NBER Working Papers 7668, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  21. Blanchard, Olivier J, 1985. "Debt, Deficits, and Finite Horizons," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 93(2), pages 223-47, April.
  22. Michael Woodford, 1996. "Control of the Public Debt: A Requirement for Price Stability?," NBER Working Papers 5684, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  23. Olivier Blanchard & Roberto Perotti, 1999. "An Empirical Characterization of the Dynamic Effects of Changes in Government Spending and Taxes on Output," NBER Working Papers 7269, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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