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The Cyclicality of Fiscal Policies in the CEMAC Region

Author

Listed:
  • Gaston K Mpatswe
  • Sampawende J Tapsoba
  • Robert C York

Abstract

This paper examines fiscal cyclicality in the CEMAC region during 1980-2008. The issue has attracted very little empirical interest but is important if fiscal policies are to play a role in mitigating external shocks that exacerbate economic cycles across the region. We assess whether fiscal policies across these six countries have been procyclical using panel data to elaborate our analysis. Like in other sub-Saharan countries, total public expenditure in the CEMAC is found to be strongly procyclical. This is most pronounced for public investment, which overreacts to output growth with elasticity above 1. We further find that institutional weaknesses and poor governance partly explain this behavior. In contrast, the existence of an IMF-supported program can be a counterbalancing influence in attenuating this bias.

Suggested Citation

  • Gaston K Mpatswe & Sampawende J Tapsoba & Robert C York, 2011. "The Cyclicality of Fiscal Policies in the CEMAC Region," IMF Working Papers 11/205, International Monetary Fund.
  • Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:11/205
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Alberto Alesina & Filipe R. Campante & Guido Tabellini, 2008. "Why is Fiscal Policy Often Procyclical?," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 6(5), pages 1006-1036, September.
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    4. Mark Aguiar & Gita Gopinath, 2007. "Emerging Market Business Cycles: The Cycle Is the Trend," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 115, pages 69-102.
    5. Peter S. Heller, 2005. "Understanding Fiscal Space," IMF Policy Discussion Papers 05/4, International Monetary Fund.
    6. International Monetary Fund, 2010. "A Historical Public Debt Database," IMF Working Papers 10/245, International Monetary Fund.
    7. 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.
    8. Bulír, Ales & Hamann, A. Javier, 2008. "Volatility of Development Aid: From the Frying Pan into the Fire?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 36(10), pages 2048-2066, October.
    9. 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.
    10. Philippe Aghion & Ioana Marinescu, 2008. "Cyclical Budgetary Policy and Economic Growth: What Do We Learn from OECD Panel Data?," NBER Chapters,in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2007, Volume 22, pages 251-278 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. Johannes Wiegand, 2004. "Fiscal Surveillance in a Petro Zone; The Case of the CEMAC," IMF Working Papers 04/8, International Monetary Fund.
    12. Carmignani, Fabrizio, 2010. "Cyclical fiscal policy in Africa," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 254-267, March.
    13. Plamen K Iossifov & Misa Takebe & Zaijin Zhan & Noriaki Kinoshita & Robert C York, 2009. "Improving Surveillance Across the CEMAC Region," IMF Working Papers 09/260, International Monetary Fund.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Jean-Louis Combes & Rasmané Ouedraogo, 2014. "Does Pro-cyclical Aid Lead to Pro-cyclical Fiscal Policy? An Empirical Analysis for Sub-Saharan Africa," Working Papers halshs-01084600, HAL.
    2. Guerguil, Martine & Mandon, Pierre & Tapsoba, René, 2017. "Flexible fiscal rules and countercyclical fiscal policy," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 52(C), pages 189-220.
    3. Etoundi Atenga, Eric Martial, 2017. "On the Determinants of output Co-movements in the CEMAC Zone:Examining the Role of Trade, Policy Channel, Economic Structure and Common Factors," MPRA Paper 82091, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    4. Rasmane Ouedraogo, 2015. "Does pro-cyclical fiscal policy lead to more income inequality? An empirical analysis for sub-saharan Africa," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 35(2), pages 1306-1317.
    5. Paloviita, Maritta & Ikonen, Pasi, 2016. "How to explain errors in budget balance forecasts in euro area countries? Empirical evidence based on real-time data," Research Discussion Papers 17/2016, Bank of Finland.
    6. Carlos Caceres & Marcos Poplawski-Ribeiro & Darlena Tartari, 2013. "Inflation Dynamics in the CEMAC Region," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 22(2), pages 239-275, March.
    7. Carneiro,Francisco Galrao & Garrido,Leonardo, 2015. "New evidence on the cyclicality of fiscal policy," Policy Research Working Paper Series 7293, The World Bank.

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