IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Asymmetric Effects of Government Spending: Does the Level of Real Interest Rates Matter?

  • Woon Gyu Choi
  • Michael B. Devereux

This paper empirically explores how fiscal policy (represented by increases in government spending) has asymmetric effects on economic activity at different levels of real interest rates. It suggests that the effect of fiscal policy depends on the level of real rates, since the Ricardian effect is smaller at lower financing costs of fiscal policy. Using threshold regression models on U.S. data, the paper provides new evidence that expansionary government spending is more conducive to short-run growth when real rates are low. It also finds asymmetric effects on interest rates and inflation, and threshold effects associated with substitution between financing methods.

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 International Monetary Fund in its series IMF Working Papers with number 05/7.

in new window

Length: 36
Date of creation: 01 Jan 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:05/7
Contact details of provider: Postal: International Monetary Fund, Washington, DC USA
Phone: (202) 623-7000
Fax: (202) 623-4661
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

Order Information: Web:

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. Sutherland, Alan, 1995. "Fiscal Crises and Aggregate Demand: Can High Public Debt Reverse the Effects of Fiscal Policy?," CEPR Discussion Papers 1246, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Hansen, B.E., 1991. "Inference when a Nuisance Parameter is Not Identified Under the Null Hypothesis," RCER Working Papers 296, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
  3. Evan F. Koenig & James Dolmas, 2003. "Monetary policy in a zero-interest-rate economy," Southwest Economy, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, issue Jul, pages 1-5, 16.
  4. Ramey, Valerie A. & Shapiro, Matthew D., 1998. "Costly capital reallocation and the effects of government spending," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 145-194, June.
  5. Garcia, R. & Perron, P., 1994. "An Analysis of the Real Interest rate Under Regime Shifts," Cahiers de recherche 9428, Centre interuniversitaire de recherche en économie quantitative, CIREQ.
  6. Ben Bernanke, 1990. "The Federal Funds Rate and the Channels of Monetary Transnission," NBER Working Papers 3487, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Durlauf, S.M. & Johnson, P.A., 1995. "Multiple Regimes and Cross-Country Growth Behavior," Working papers 9419r, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
  8. Ball, Laurence & Elmendorf, Douglas W & Mankiw, N Gregory, 1998. "The Deficit Gamble," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 30(4), pages 699-720, November.
  9. Vito Tanzi & Howell H. Zee, 1996. "Fiscal Policy and Long-Run Growth," IMF Working Papers 96/119, International Monetary Fund.
  10. Francesco Giavazzi & Tullio Jappelli & Marco Pagano, 2000. "Searching for Non-Linear Effects of Fiscal Policy: Evidence from Industrial and Developing Countries," NBER Working Papers 7460, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Jushan Bai, 1995. "Estimating Multiple Breaks One at a Time," Working papers 95-18, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  12. Evans, Paul, 1985. "Do Large Deficits Produce High Interest Rates?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(1), pages 68-87, March.
  13. Reinhart, Carmen & Rogoff, Kenneth & Savastano, Miguel, 2003. "Debt intolerance," MPRA Paper 13932, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  14. Vito Tanzi & Howell H. Zee, 1997. "Fiscal Policy and Long-Run Growth," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 44(2), pages 179-209, June.
  15. Canzoneri, Matthew B & Dellas, Harris, 1995. "Real Interest Rates and Central Bank Operating Procedures," CEPR Discussion Papers 1099, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  16. Troy Davig & Eric M. Leeper & Hess Chung, 2004. "Monetary and Fiscal Policy Switching," NBER Working Papers 10362, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. 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.
  18. N. Gregory Mankiw, 1986. "Government Purchases and Real Interest Rates," NBER Working Papers 2009, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Devereux, Michael B & Love, David R F, 1995. "The Dynamic Effects of Government Spending Policies in a Two-Sector Endogenous Growth Model," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 27(1), pages 232-56, February.
  20. Barro, Robert J, 1981. "Output Effects of Government Purchases," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(6), pages 1086-1121, December.
  21. Antonio Fatás & Ilian Mihov, 2003. "The Case For Restricting Fiscal Policy Discretion," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 118(4), pages 1419-1447, November.
  22. 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.
  23. Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum, 1990. "Current real business cycle theories and aggregate labor market fluctuations," Discussion Paper / Institute for Empirical Macroeconomics 24, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  24. Pesaran, H.M. & Potter, S.M., 1995. "A Floor and Ceiling Model of U.S. Output," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 9407, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
  25. Eric M. Leeper & Christopher A. Sims & Tao Zha, 1996. "What Does Monetary Policy Do?," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 27(2), pages 1-78.
  26. Donald W.K. Andrews & Werner Ploberger, 1992. "Optimal Tests When a Nuisance Parameter Is Present Only Under the Alternative," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1015, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  27. Stanley Fischer & Ratna Sahay & Carlos A. Végh Gramont, 2002. "Modern Hyper- and High Inflations," IMF Working Papers 02/197, International Monetary Fund.
  28. Baxter, Marianne & King, Robert G, 1993. "Fiscal Policy in General Equilibrium," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(3), pages 315-34, June.
  29. David Aschauer, 1988. "Is public expenditure productive?," Staff Memoranda 88-7, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  30. Evans, Paul & Karras, Georgios, 1998. "Liquidity Constraints and the Substitutability between Private and Government Consumption: The Role of Military and Non-military Spending," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 36(2), pages 203-14, April.
  31. repec:cup:etheor:v:13:y:1997:i:3:p:315-52 is not listed on IDEAS
  32. Roberto Perotti, 1999. "Fiscal Policy In Good Times And Bad," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 114(4), pages 1399-1436, November.
  33. Luis Catão & Marco Terrones, 2003. "Fiscal Deficits and Inflation," IMF Working Papers 03/65, International Monetary Fund.
  34. Dwyer, Gerald P, Jr, 1982. "Inflation and Government Deficits," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 20(3), pages 315-29, July.
  35. Barry, Frank & Devereux, Michael B, 1995. "The 'Expansionary Fiscal Contraction' Hypothesis: A Neo-Keynesian Analysis," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 47(2), pages 249-64, April.
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:imf:imfwpa:05/7. 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: (Jim Beardow)

or (Hassan Zaidi)

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.