IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this paper

The recessive attitude of EMU policies: reflections on the italian experience, 1998–2008

  • Canale, Rosaria Rita
  • Napolitano, Oreste

The EMU assigns a very marginal role to economic policy and relies on the leading idea that, if prices are kept constant, there will be an automatic convergence towards long-run equilibrium income. These beliefs represent the theoretical underpinnings of fiscal and monetary policy strategies in Europe. In order to highlight the weakness of these foundations, the paper evaluates empirically the effects of public expenditure and interest rate setting on equilibrium income in Italy from 1998 to 2008. The analysis supports the conclusions that government spending has a positive impact on national income while inflation targeting has a negative impact. Moreover the empirical evidence shows that a high level of debt does not produce negative effects on GDP. Finally, at a time of financial crisis, these results appear to be reinforced for fiscal policy, but weakened for monetary policy. The paper finally states that the EMU’s rigid rules for both fiscal and monetary policy have recessive attitudes, and limit the use of instruments to deal with high levels of unemployment, definitely undermining the future existence of the single-currency area.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
File Function: original version
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 24705.

in new window

Date of creation: Apr 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:24705
Contact details of provider: Postal:
Ludwigstraße 33, D-80539 Munich, Germany

Phone: +49-(0)89-2180-2459
Fax: +49-(0)89-2180-992459
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Richard Clarida & Jordi Galí & Mark Gertler, 1997. "The science of monetary policy: A new Keynesian perspective," Economics Working Papers 356, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Apr 1999.
  2. Alberto Alesina & Guido Tabellini, 2005. "Why is fiscal policy often procyclical?," Levine's Bibliography 784828000000000465, UCLA Department of Economics.
  3. Giavazzi, Francesco & Pagano, Marco, 1995. "Non-Keynesian Effects of Fiscal Policy Changes: International Evidence and the Swedish Experience," CEPR Discussion Papers 1284, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Philip Arestis & Kevin McCauley & Malcolm Sawyer, 2000. "An Alternative Stability Pact for the European Union," Macroeconomics 0004043, EconWPA.
  5. J.A. Kregel, 1999. "Currency Stabilization through Full Employment: Can EMU Combine Price Stability with Employment and Income Growth?," Eastern Economic Journal, Eastern Economic Association, vol. 25(1), pages 35-47, Winter.
  6. Rosaria Rita Canale & Pasquale Foresti & Ugo Marani & Oreste Napolitano, 2007. "On Keynesian effects of (apparent) non-Keynesian fiscal policies," Discussion Papers 8_2007, D.E.S. (Department of Economic Studies), University of Naples "Parthenope", Italy.
  7. Jordi Galí & Mark Gertler, 2007. "Macroeconomic Modeling for Monetary Policy Evaluation," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 21(4), pages 25-46, Fall.
  8. Axel Schimmelpfennig & Selma Mahfouz & Richard Hemming, 2002. "Fiscal Policy and Economic Activity During Recessions in Advanced Economies," IMF Working Papers 02/87, International Monetary Fund.
  9. Seater, John J, 1993. "Ricardian Equivalence," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 31(1), pages 142-90, March.
  10. Selma Mahfouz & Richard Hemming & Michael Kell, 2002. "The Effectiveness of Fiscal Policy in Stimulating Economic Activity; A Review of the Literature," IMF Working Papers 02/208, International Monetary Fund.
  11. Philip Arestis & Malcolm Sawyer, 2004. "Macroeconomic policies of the Economic and Monetary Union: theoretical underpinnings and challenges," Chapters, in: Neo-Liberal Economic Policy, chapter 7 Edward Elgar Publishing.
  12. Giuseppe Fontana, 2009. "Whither New Consensus Macroeconomics? The Role of Government and Fiscal Policy in Modern Macroeconomics," Economics Working Paper Archive wp_563, Levy Economics Institute.
  13. Olivier Blanchard, 2009. "The State of Macro," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 1(1), pages 209-228, 05.
  14. John H. Cochrane, 1995. "What do the VARs Mean?: Measuring the Output Effects of Monetary Policy," NBER Working Papers 5154, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Sargent, Thomas J & Wallace, Neil, 1975. ""Rational" Expectations, the Optimal Monetary Instrument, and the Optimal Money Supply Rule," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 83(2), pages 241-54, April.
  16. C. Sardoni & L. Randall Wray, 2007. "Fixed and Flexible Exchange Rates and Currency Sovereignty," Economics Working Paper Archive wp_489, Levy Economics Institute.
  17. Giuseppe Fontana & Alfonso Palacio- Vera, 2005. "Are Long-Run Price Stability and Short-run Output Stabilization All that Monetary Policy Can Aim For?," Macroeconomics 0511024, EconWPA.
  18. Tatiana Kirsanova & Sven Jari Stehn & David Vines, 2005. "The Interactions between Fiscal Policy and Monetary Policy," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 21(4), pages 532-564, Winter.
  19. Jean-Paul Fitoussi & Francesco Saraceno, 2004. "The Brussels-Frankfurt-Washington Consensus. Old and New Tradeoffs in Economics," Working Papers hal-01065485, HAL.
  20. Christopher Allsopp & David Vines, 2005. "The Macroeconomic Role of Fiscal Policy," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 21(4), pages 485-508, Winter.
  21. Gruen, David W R, 1991. "What People Know and What Economists Think They Know: Surveys on Ricardian Equivalence," Australian Economic Papers, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 30(56), pages 1-9, June.
  22. Maria Gabriella Briotti, 2005. "Economic reactions to public finance consolidation - a survey of the literature," Occasional Paper Series 38, European Central Bank.
  23. Canale, Rosaria Rita, 2008. "Central bank reaction to public deficit and sound public finance: the case of the European Monetary Union," MPRA Paper 8789, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  24. Becker, Torbjorn, 1997. "An investigation of Ricardian equivalence in a common trends model," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(3), pages 405-431, August.
  25. B. Douglas Bernheim, 1987. "Ricardian Equivalence: An Evaluation of Theory and Evidence," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1987, Volume 2, pages 263-316 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  26. Antonio Fatas & Ilian Mihov, 2009. "The Euro and Fiscal Policy," NBER Working Papers 14722, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  27. Robert M. Solow, 2005. "Rethinking Fiscal Policy," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 21(4), pages 509-514, Winter.
  28. Alain Parguez, 1999. "The Expected Failure of the European Economic and Monetary Union: A False Money against the Real Economy," Eastern Economic Journal, Eastern Economic Association, vol. 25(1), pages 63-76, Winter.
  29. Olivier Blanchard & Roberto Perotti, 1999. "An Empirical Characterization of the Dynamic Effects of Changes in Government Spending and Taxes on Output," NBER Working Papers 7269, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  30. Adam Posen, 2008. "The Future of Inflation Targeting," Challenge, M.E. Sharpe, Inc., vol. 51(4), pages 5-22, July.
  31. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1972. "Expectations and the neutrality of money," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 4(2), pages 103-124, April.
  32. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1977. "Rules Rather Than Discretion: The Inconsistency of Optimal Plans," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 473-91, June.
  33. Paul Krugman, 2005. "Is Fiscal Policy Poised for a Comeback?," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 21(4), pages 515-523, Winter.
  34. Barro, Robert J., 1974. "Are Government Bonds Net Wealth?," Scholarly Articles 3451399, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  35. David H. Romer, 2000. "Keynesian Macroeconomics without the LM Curve," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(2), pages 149-169, Spring.
  36. Jordi Gali & Tommaso Monacelli, 2005. "Optimal fiscal policy in a monetary union," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:24705. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Joachim Winter)

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 references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link 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 profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

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

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.