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Does Political Instability lead to higher and more volatile inflation? A Panel Data Analysis

Economists generally accept the proposition that high and volatile inflation rates generate inefficiencies that reduce society’s welfare. Furthermore, studies have shown that inflation is harmful to economic growth. However, determining the causes of the worldwide diversity of inflationary experiences is an important challenge not yet satisfactorily confronted by the profession. Based on a broad dataset covering over 100 countries for the period 1975-1997 and using dynamic and static panel data econometric techniques, this paper shows that a higher degree of political instability is associated with both higher inflation levels and volatility. Not only does this paper advance the political economy literature establishing a relationship between inflation moments and political instability, but it also has important policy implications regarding the optimal design of inflation stabilization programs and of the institutions favorable to price stability.

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Paper provided by NIPE - Universidade do Minho in its series NIPE Working Papers with number 10/2003.

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Date of creation: 2003
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Handle: RePEc:nip:nipewp:10/2003
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  1. Aizenman, Joshua, 1992. "Competitive Externalities and the Optimal Seigniorage," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 24(1), pages 61-71, February.
  2. Tabellini, Guido & Alesina, Alberto, 1990. "Voting on the Budget Deficit," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(1), pages 37-49, March.
  3. Alesina, Alberto & Drazen, Allan, 1991. "Why Are Stabilizations Delayed?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(5), pages 1170-88, December.
  4. Tabellini, Guido & Alesina, Alberto, 1990. "A Positive Theory of Fiscal Deficits and Government Debt," Scholarly Articles 3612769, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  5. Carlos A. Végh, 1989. "Government Spending and Inflationary Finance: A Public Finance Approach," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 36(3), pages 657-677, September.
  6. Stanley Fischer & Ratna Sahay & Carlos A. Végh Gramont, 2002. "Modern Hyper- and High Inflations," IMF Working Papers 02/197, International Monetary Fund.
  7. Francisco José Veiga, 2000. "Delays of Inflation Stabilizations," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 12(3), pages 275-295, November.
  8. Nannestad, Peter & Paldam, Martin, 1994. " The VP-Function: A Survey of the Literature on Vote and Popularity Functions after 25 Years," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 79(3-4), pages 213-45, June.
  9. Arellano, Manuel & Bond, Stephen, 1991. "Some Tests of Specification for Panel Data: Monte Carlo Evidence and an Application to Employment Equations," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 58(2), pages 277-97, April.
  10. Jose Veiga, Francisco, 1999. "What causes the failure of inflation stabilization plans?," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 169-194, February.
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