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Fiscal Policy and Unemployment

  • Marco Battaglini
  • Stephen Coate

This paper explores the interaction between fiscal policy and unemployment. It develops a dynamic economic model in which unemployment can arise but can be mitigated by tax cuts and public spending increases. Such policies are fiscally costly, but can be financed by issuing government debt. In the context of this model, the paper analyzes the simultaneous determination of fiscal policy and unemployment in long run equilibrium. Outcomes with both a benevolent government and political decision-making are studied. With political decision-making, the model yields a simple positive theory of fiscal policy and unemployment.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 17562.

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Date of creation: Nov 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:17562
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  1. Furceri, Davide & Karras, Georgios, 2010. "Average tax rate cyclicality in OECD countries: A test of three fiscal policy theories," MPRA Paper 22208, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  2. S. Rao Aiyagari & Albert Marcet & Thomas J. Sargent & Juha Seppala, 2002. "Optimal Taxation without State-Contingent Debt," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 110(6), pages 1220-1254, December.
  3. Lawrence Christiano & Martin Eichenbaum & Sergio Rebelo, 2011. "When Is the Government Spending Multiplier Large?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 119(1), pages 78 - 121.
  4. William T. Dickens & Lorenz Goette & Erica L. Groshen & Steinar Holden & Julian Messina & Mark E. Schweitzer & Jarkko Turunen & Melanie Ward, 2006. "How wages change: micro evidence from the International Wage Flexibility Project," Working Paper 0620, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
  5. Andrew Mountford & Harald Uhlig, 2008. "What are the Effects of Fiscal Policy Shocks?," NBER Working Papers 14551, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Battaglini, Marco & Coate, Stephen, 2005. "Inefficiency in Legislative Policy-Making: A Dynamic Analysis," Papers 08-09-2005, Princeton University, Research Program in Political Economy.
  7. Alberto Alesina & Guido Tabellini, 2005. "Why is fiscal policy often procyclical?," Levine's Bibliography 784828000000000465, UCLA Department of Economics.
  8. Barro, Robert J, 1979. "On the Determination of the Public Debt," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(5), pages 940-71, October.
  9. Marco Battaglini & Stephen Coate, 2008. "Fiscal Policy over the Real Business Cycle: A Positive Theory," NBER Working Papers 14047, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Pascal Michaillat, 2010. "Do Matching Frictions Explain Unemployment? Not in Bad Times," CEP Discussion Papers dp1024, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  11. N. Gregory Mankiw & Matthew C. Weinzierl, 2011. "An Exploration of Optimal Stabilization Policy," NBER Working Papers 17029, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Andolfatto, David, 1996. "Business Cycles and Labor-Market Search," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(1), pages 112-32, March.
  13. Ardagna, Silvia, 2007. "Fiscal Policy in Unionized Labor Markets," Scholarly Articles 2580048, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  14. Battaglini, Marco & Coate, Stephen, 2007. "A Dynamic Theory of Public Spending, Taxation and Debt," Working Papers 07-04, Cornell University, Center for Analytic Economics.
  15. Bovenberg, A.L. & van der Ploeg, F., 1996. "Optimal taxation, public goods and environmental policy with involuntary unemployment," Other publications TiSEM 2a1a87d9-2ed9-41a7-b3aa-b, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
  16. Alberto Alesina & Silvia Ardagna, 2010. "Large Changes in Fiscal Policy: Taxes versus Spending," NBER Chapters, in: Tax Policy and the Economy, Volume 24, pages 35-68 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Mertens, Karel & Ravn, Morten O, 2010. "Fiscal Policy in an Expectations Driven Liquidity Trap," CEPR Discussion Papers 7931, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  18. Holden, Steinar & Wulfsberg, Fredrik, 2009. "How strong is the macroeconomic case for downward real wage rigidity?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(4), pages 605-615, May.
  19. Jonathan David Ostry & Atish R. Ghosh & Jun I Kim & Mahvash S Qureshi, 2010. "Fiscal Space," IMF Staff Position Notes 2010/11, International Monetary Fund.
  20. 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.
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