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Fiscal Risk in a Monetary Union

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  • Betty Daniel
  • Christos Shiamptanis

Abstract

A country entering a monetary union gives up the right to determine its own monetary policy. Individual fiscal authorities promise passive fiscal policy, allowing the central monetary authority to use active monetary policy. Since a government, which can print its own money, can honor its nominal debt unconditionally, entrance into a monetary union raises new issues of potential fiscal insolvency. When there is an upper bound on the magnitude of the surplus and stochastic shocks to the surplus, a government can find itself in a position in which it cannot borrow to continue with its desired passive fiscal policy. This paper considers the risk of a fiscal financial crisis in a monetary union under alternative assumptions about how the fiscal authority would respond. The response affects the timing and probability of a crisis. We consider both outright default and policy switching, whereby the fiscal authority in crisis switches to active fiscal policy and the monetary authority switches to passive monetary policy. We apply the model to estimate fiscal risk in the European Monetary Union. Using panel estimates of the parameters in the surplus rule and initial values for government debt and the primary surplus, we simulate fiscal risk under the two alternative fiscal responses to a crisis. We find that countries with initial values bound by the Maastricht Treaty limits are safe, while countries like Italy and Greece, in which debt has strayed far above these limits, might not be.

Suggested Citation

  • Betty Daniel & Christos Shiamptanis, 2008. "Fiscal Risk in a Monetary Union," Discussion Papers 08-12, University at Albany, SUNY, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:nya:albaec:08-12
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    File URL: http://www.albany.edu/economics/research/workingp/2008/RiskEMU12188.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Bi, Huixin & Shen, Wenyi & Yang, Shu-Chun S., 2016. "Fiscal limits in developing countries: A DSGE Approach," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 49(C), pages 119-130.
    2. Eric M. Leeper & Todd B. Walker, 2012. "Perceptions and Misperceptions of Fiscal Inflation," NBER Chapters,in: Fiscal Policy after the Financial Crisis, pages 255-299 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Betty C. Daniel & Christos Shiamptanis, 2008. "Fiscal policy in the European Monetary Union," International Finance Discussion Papers 961, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    4. Bi, Huixin, 2012. "Sovereign default risk premia, fiscal limits, and fiscal policy," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 56(3), pages 389-410.
    5. Christos Shiamptanis, 2017. "Austerity Measures: Do they avert solvency crises?," LCERPA Working Papers 0103, Laurier Centre for Economic Research and Policy Analysis, revised 19 Jun 2017.
    6. Wildmer Daniel Gregori & Wildmer Agnese Sacchi, 2016. "Has the Grexit news spilled over into euro area financial markets? The role of domestic political leaders, supranational executives and institutions," Mo.Fi.R. Working Papers 134, Money and Finance Research group (Mo.Fi.R.) - Univ. Politecnica Marche - Dept. Economic and Social Sciences.
    7. Juessen, Falko & Linnemann, Ludger & Schabert, Andreas, 2016. "Default Risk Premia On Government Bonds In A Quantitative Macroeconomic Model," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 20(01), pages 380-403, January.
    8. Daniel, Betty C. & Shiamptanis, Christos, 2013. "Pushing the limit? Fiscal policy in the European Monetary Union," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 37(11), pages 2307-2321.
    9. Checherita-Westphal, Cristina & Žďárek, Václav, 2017. "Fiscal reaction function and fiscal fatigue: evidence for the euro area," Working Paper Series 2036, European Central Bank.
    10. Kriwoluzky, Alexander & Müller, Gernot J. & Wolf, Martin, 2015. "Exit Expectations and Debt Crises in Currency Unions," IWH Discussion Papers 18/2015, Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH).
    11. Daniel, Betty C., 2014. "A graceful return of the drachma," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 71(C), pages 228-243.
    12. Christos Shiamptanis, 2015. "Risk Assessment Under A Nonlinear Fiscal Policy Rule," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 53(3), pages 1539-1555, July.
    13. Betty C. Daniel, 2010. "Exchange Rate Crises and Fiscal Solvency," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 42(6), pages 1109-1135, September.
    14. Daniel, Betty C. & Shiamptanis, Christos, 2012. "Fiscal risk in a monetary union," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 56(6), pages 1289-1309.
    15. Betty Daniel, Christos Shiamptanis, 2015. "Predicting Sovereign Fiscal Crises: High-Debt Developed Countries," LCERPA Working Papers 0090, Laurier Centre for Economic Research and Policy Analysis, revised 05 May 2015.
    16. Christos Shiamptanis, 2012. "Risk Assessment Under a Non-linear Fiscal Rule," Working Papers 038, Ryerson University, Department of Economics.
    17. repec:wlu:lcerpa:wm0070 is not listed on IDEAS
    18. Hürtgen, Patrick & Rühmkorf, Ronald, 2014. "Sovereign default risk and state-dependent twin deficits," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 48(PB), pages 357-382.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C63 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling - - - Computational Techniques
    • E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy
    • E63 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Comparative or Joint Analysis of Fiscal and Monetary Policy; Stabilization; Treasury Policy
    • F34 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - International Lending and Debt Problems
    • H63 - Public Economics - - National Budget, Deficit, and Debt - - - Debt; Debt Management; Sovereign Debt

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