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Deflation and Public Finances; Evidence from the Historical Records

Author

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  • Nicolas End
  • Sampawende J Tapsoba
  • G. Terrier
  • Renaud Duplay

Abstract

This paper examines the impact of deflation on fiscal aggregates. With deflation relatively rare in modern history, it relies mostly on the historical records, using a dataset panel covering 150 years and 21 advanced economies. Empirical evidence shows that deflation affects public finances mostly through increases in public debt ratios, reflecting a worsening in interest rate–growth differentials. On average, a mild rate of deflation increases public debt ratios by almost 2 percent of GDP a year, this impact being larger during recessionary deflations. Using a simulation model that accounts for composition effects and price expectations, we also find that, for European countries, a 2 percentage point deflationary shock in both 2015 and 2016 would lead to a deterioration in the primary balance of as much as 1 percent of GDP by 2019.

Suggested Citation

  • Nicolas End & Sampawende J Tapsoba & G. Terrier & Renaud Duplay, 2015. "Deflation and Public Finances; Evidence from the Historical Records," IMF Working Papers 15/176, International Monetary Fund.
  • Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:15/176
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    Cited by:

    1. repec:ris:sphecs:0293 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Cláudia Braz & João Amador & Lara Wemans & Maria Manuel Campos & Sharmin Sazedj, 2016. "Public debt sustainability:Methodologies and debates in European institutions," Working Papers o201601, Banco de Portugal, Economics and Research Department.
    3. Juan Carlos Berganza & Pedro del Río & Fructuoso Borrallo, 2016. "Determinants and implications of low global inflation rates," Occasional Papers 1608, Banco de España;Occasional Papers Homepage.
    4. António Afonso & João Tovar Jalles, 2016. "The Fiscal Consequences of Deflation: Evidence from the Golden Age of Globalization," Working Papers Department of Economics 2016/23, ISEG - Lisbon School of Economics and Management, Department of Economics, Universidade de Lisboa.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Deflation; Public finance; Fiscal policy; Fiscal analysis; Developed countries; Panel analysis; Fiscal policy; Deflation; Low inflation; Inflation; Public finances;

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