IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/nip/nipewp/24-2009.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Election Results and Opportunistic Policies: A New Test of the Rational Political Business Cycle Model

Author

Listed:

Abstract

The literature on the rational political business cycle suggests that politicians systematically manipulate economic and fiscal conditions before elections to increase their chance of gaining reelection. Most tests of this theory look for evidence of preelection distortions in fiscal policy. We propose a new test that, instead, explores the implied two-way interaction between the magnitude of the opportunistic distortion and the margin of victory. The test is implemented using a panel of 278 Portuguese municipalities (from 1979 to 2005). The results show that (1) opportunism pays off, leading to a larger win-margin for the incumbent; (2) incumbents behave more opportunistically when their win-margin is small. These results are consistent with the theoretical model.

Suggested Citation

  • Linda Gonçalves Veiga & Francisco José Veiga & Toke S. Aidt, 2009. "Election Results and Opportunistic Policies: A New Test of the Rational Political Business Cycle Model," NIPE Working Papers 24/2009, NIPE - Universidade do Minho.
  • Handle: RePEc:nip:nipewp:24/2009
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www3.eeg.uminho.pt/economia/nipe/docs/2009/NIPE_WP_24_2009.pdf
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Mueller, John E., 1970. "Presidential Popularity from Truman to Johnson1," American Political Science Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 64(1), pages 18-34, March.
    2. Timothy Besley & Anne Case, 2003. "Political Institutions and Policy Choices: Evidence from the United States," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 41(1), pages 7-73, March.
    3. Tuomala, Matti, 1990. "Optimal Income Tax and Redistribution," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198286059, Decembrie.
    4. Seitz, Helmut, 2000. "Fiscal Policy, Deficits and Politics of Subnational Governments: The Case of the German Laender," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 102(3-4), pages 183-218, March.
    5. Clémence Vergne, 2009. "Democracy, elections and allocation of public expenditures in developing countries," Post-Print hal-00368509, HAL.
    6. Kenneth Rogoff & Anne Sibert, 1988. "Elections and Macroeconomic Policy Cycles," The Review of Economic Studies, Review of Economic Studies Ltd, vol. 55(1), pages 1-16.
    7. Vergne, Clémence, 2009. "Democracy, elections and allocation of public expenditures in developing countries," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 63-77, March.
    8. Francisco José Veiga & Linda Gonçalves Veiga, 2004. "Popularity functions, partisan effects, and support in Parliament," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 16(1), pages 101-115, March.
    9. Frey, Bruno S & Schneider, Friedrich, 1978. "A Politico-Economic Model of the United Kingdom," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 88(350), pages 243-253, June.
    10. Per Pettersson-Lidbom, 2001. "An Empirical Investigation of the Strategic Use of Debt," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 109(3), pages 570-583, June.
    11. Akhmed Akhmedov & Ekaterina Zhuravskaya, 2004. "Opportunistic Political Cycles: Test in a Young Democracy Setting," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, President and Fellows of Harvard College, vol. 119(4), pages 1301-1338.
    12. Brender, Adi & Drazen, Allan, 2005. "Political budget cycles in new versus established democracies," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(7), pages 1271-1295, October.
    13. Alesina, Alberto & Londregan, John & Rosenthal, Howard, 1993. "A Model of the Political Economy of the United States," American Political Science Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 87(1), pages 12-33, March.
    14. Frey, Bruno S & Schneider, Friedrich, 1978. "An Empirical Study of Politico-Economic Interaction in the United States," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 60(2), pages 174-183, May.
    15. Adi Brender & Allan Drazen, 2008. "How Do Budget Deficits and Economic Growth Affect Reelection Prospects? Evidence from a Large Panel of Countries," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(5), pages 2203-2220, December.
    16. Linda Veiga & Francisco Veiga, 2007. "Political business cycles at the municipal level," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 131(1), pages 45-64, April.
    17. Francisco JosÈ Veiga & Linda GonÁalves Veiga, 2004. "The Determinants of Vote Intentions in Portugal," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 118(3_4), pages 341-364, March.
    18. Blais, Andre & Nadeau, Richard, 1992. "The Electoral Budget Cycle," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 74(4), pages 389-403, December.
    19. In-Koo Cho & David M. Kreps, 1987. "Signaling Games and Stable Equilibria," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, President and Fellows of Harvard College, vol. 102(2), pages 179-221.
    20. Snyder, James M, 1989. "Election Goals and the Allocation of Campaign Resources," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(3), pages 637-660, May.
    21. Hibbs, Douglas A., 1977. "Political Parties and Macroeconomic Policy," American Political Science Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 71(4), pages 1467-1487, December.
    22. Rosenberg, Jacob, 1992. "Rationality and the Political Business Cycle: The Case of Local Government," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 73(1), pages 71-81, January.
    23. Shi, Min & Svensson, Jakob, 2006. "Political budget cycles: Do they differ across countries and why?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(8-9), pages 1367-1389, September.
    24. Hibbs, Douglas Jr., 1992. "Partisan theory after fifteen years," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 361-373, October.
    25. Rogoff, Kenneth, 1990. "Equilibrium Political Budget Cycles," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(1), pages 21-36, March.
    26. Alberto Alesina, 1987. "Macroeconomic Policy in a Two-Party System as a Repeated Game," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, President and Fellows of Harvard College, vol. 102(3), pages 651-678.
    27. William D. Nordhaus, 1975. "The Political Business Cycle," The Review of Economic Studies, Review of Economic Studies Ltd, vol. 42(2), pages 169-190.
    28. James E. Alt & David Dreyer Lassen, 2006. "Transparency, Political Polarization, and Political Budget Cycles in OECD Countries," American Journal of Political Science, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 50(3), pages 530-550, July.
    29. Galli, Emma & Rossi, Stefania P S, 2002. "Political Budget Cycles: The Case of the Western German Lander," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 110(3-4), pages 283-303, March.
    30. Carson, Jamie L. & Engstrom, Erik J. & Roberts, Jason M., 2007. "Candidate Quality, the Personal Vote, and the Incumbency Advantage in Congress," American Political Science Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 101(2), pages 289-301, May.
    31. Kevin Grier, 2008. "US presidential elections and real GDP growth, 1961–2004," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 135(3), pages 337-352, June.
    32. Allan Drazen & Marcela Eslava, 2005. "Electoral Manipulation via Expenditure Composition: Theory and Evidence," NBER Working Papers 11085, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Toke S. Aidt & Francisco José Veiga & Linda Gonçalves Veiga, 2007. "Election Results and Opportunistic Policies: An Integrated Approach," NIPE Working Papers 24/2007, NIPE - Universidade do Minho.
    2. Aidt, Toke S. & Mooney, Graham, 2014. "Voting suffrage and the political budget cycle: Evidence from the London Metropolitan Boroughs 1902–1937," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 112(C), pages 53-71.
    3. Eric Dubois, 2016. "Political business cycles 40 years after Nordhaus," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 166(1), pages 235-259, January.
    4. Eric Dubois, 2016. "Political Business Cycles 40 Years after Nordhaus," Post-Print hal-01291401, HAL.
    5. Eric Dubois, 2016. "Political Business Cycles 40 Years after Nordhaus," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) hal-01291401, HAL.
    6. Toke Aidt & Graham Mooney, 2014. "Voter suffrage and the political budget cycle: evidence from the London Metropolitan Boroughs 1902-1937," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 1401, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
    7. Niklas Potrafke, 2012. "Political cycles and economic performance in OECD countries: empirical evidence from 1951–2006," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 150(1), pages 155-179, January.
    8. Klein, Fabio Alvim & Sakurai, Sergio Naruhiko, 2015. "Term limits and political budget cycles at the local level: evidence from a young democracy," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 21-36.
    9. Foremny, Dirk & Freier, Ronny & Moessinger, Marc-Daniel & Yeter, Mustafa, 2014. "Overlapping political budget cycles in the legislative and the executive," ZEW Discussion Papers 14-099, ZEW - Leibniz Centre for European Economic Research.
    10. Castro, Vítor & Martins, Rodrigo, 2018. "Politically driven cycles in fiscal policy: In depth analysis of the functional components of government expenditures," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 55(C), pages 44-64.
    11. Foremny, Dirk & Riedel, Nadine, 2014. "Business taxes and the electoral cycle," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 115(C), pages 48-61.
    12. Margarita Katsimi & Vassilis Sarantides, 2012. "Do elections affect the composition of fiscal policy in developed, established democracies?," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 151(1), pages 325-362, April.
    13. Mechtel, Mario & Potrafke, Niklas, 2009. "Political Cycles in Active Labor Market Policies," MPRA Paper 14270, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    14. Dirk Foremny & Ronny Freier & Marc-Daniel Moessinger & Mustafa Yeter, 2018. "Overlapping political budget cycles," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 177(1), pages 1-27, October.
    15. Rabia Nazir & Muhammad Nasir & Idrees Khawaja, 2022. "Political Budget Cycle: A Sub-National Evidence from Pakistan," Journal of Business Cycle Research, Springer;Centre for International Research on Economic Tendency Surveys (CIRET), vol. 18(3), pages 343-367, November.
    16. Linda Veiga & Francisco Veiga, 2007. "Political business cycles at the municipal level," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 131(1), pages 45-64, April.
    17. Sergio Sakurai & Naercio Menezes-Filho, 2011. "Opportunistic and partisan election cycles in Brazil: new evidence at the municipal level," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 148(1), pages 233-247, July.
    18. Jakob Haan & Jeroen Klomp, 2013. "Conditional political budget cycles: a review of recent evidence," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 157(3), pages 387-410, December.
    19. Niklas Potrafke, 2006. "Political Effects on the Allocation of Public Expenditures: Empirical Evidence from OECD Countries," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 653, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    20. Sakurai, Sergio Naruhiko & Menezes, Naercio, 2010. "Opportunistic and Partisan Election Cycles in Brazil: New Evidence at the Municipal Level," Insper Working Papers wpe_208, Insper Working Paper, Insper Instituto de Ensino e Pesquisa.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Voting and popularity functions; opportunism; rational political business cycles; local government; system estimation; Portugal;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • H72 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - State and Local Budget and Expenditures

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nip:nipewp:24/2009. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: NIPE (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/nipampt.html .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service. RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.