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Government Spending and Growth Cycles: Fiscal Policy in a Dynamic Context

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  • Jamee K. Moudud

Abstract

In this paper the impact of fiscal policy is analyzed within the context of an endogenous growth and cycles model. The investigation shows the different situations in which government expenditure can lead to both crowding-in and crowding-out of output and employment. With regard to the cycle, an increase in the share of government spending leads to an expansion of output, which is given a greater stimulus with a higher degree of monetization. Expansionary monetary policies accompanying the fiscal expansion tend to make the upswing longer and the downswing more shallow, i.e., the cycle becomes more asymmetric. The medium-run dynamics of the model along its warranted growth path essentially rest on the relative movements of business retained earnings (i.e., the private savings rate since household savings are ignored) and the government spending share. With the private savings rate fixed, a rise in the government spending share leads to medium-run crowding-out. On the other hand, if policies such as investment tax credits, lower rates of corporate taxation, and accelerated deductions for capital depreciation stimulate the growth of the business retained earnings, then an increase in the government spending share may either not have any effect on the warranted path or may even raise it, i.e., there might be crowding-in. Moreover, abstracting from any changes in retained earnings, an increase in the level of government spending produces an expansionary cyclical effect with no medium-run crowding-out. Finally, the model exploits the empirical finding that infrastructure investment by the government lowers business costs. This relationship is used to demonstrate that the warranted growth path can be increased via a shift from government consumption expenditures to infrastructure investment. In contrast to mainstream analyses these complex results imply that, within limits, the state has a number of policy levers at its disposal to regulate output and employment.

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  • Jamee K. Moudud, 1998. "Government Spending and Growth Cycles: Fiscal Policy in a Dynamic Context," Economics Working Paper Archive wp_260, Levy Economics Institute.
  • Handle: RePEc:lev:wrkpap:wp_260
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Sterman, John D., 1985. "A behavioral model of the economic long wave," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 6(1), pages 17-53, March.
    2. Lavoie, Marc, 1995. "The Kaleckian Model of Growth and Distribution and Its Neo-Ricardian and Neo-Marxian Critiques," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 19(6), pages 789-818, December.
    3. John F. Henry & L. Randall Wray, 1998. "Economic Time," Macroeconomics 9811004, EconWPA.
    4. Martin Feldstein, 1992. "The Budget and Trade Deficits Aren't Really Twins," NBER Working Papers 3966, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Fazzari, Steven M & Hubbard, R Glenn & Petersen, Bruce C, 1988. "Investment, Financing Decisions, and Tax Policy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(2), pages 200-205, May.
    6. Dimitri B. Papadimitriou & L. Randall Wray, 1994. "Flying Blind: The Federal Reserve's Experiment with Unobservables," Economics Working Paper Archive wp_124, Levy Economics Institute.
    7. Greiner, Alfred & Semmler, Willi, 2000. "Endogenous Growth, Government Debt and Budgetary Regimes," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 22(3), pages 363-384, July.
    8. HARJIT K. Arora & PAMI Dua, 1993. "Budget Deficits, Domestic Investment, And Trade Deficits," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 11(1), pages 29-44, January.
    9. Alicia H. Munnell, 1992. "Policy Watch: Infrastructure Investment and Economic Growth," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 6(4), pages 189-198, Fall.
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    11. Morrison, Catherine J & Schwartz, Amy Ellen, 1996. "State Infrastructure and Productive Performance," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(5), pages 1095-1111, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. Marc Lavoie & Gabriel Rodriguez & Mario Seccareccia, 2004. "Similitudes and Discrepancies in Post-Keynesian and Marxist Theories of Investment: A Theoretical and Empirical Investigation," International Review of Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 18(2), pages 127-149.

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