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Fiscal Policy and Learning

Author

Listed:
  • Kaushik Mitra
  • George W. Evans
  • Seppo Honkapohja

Abstract

Using the standard real business cycle model with lump-sum taxes, we analyze the impact of fiscal policy when agents form expectations using adaptive learning rather than rational expectations (RE). The output multipliers for government purchases are significantly higher under learning, and fall within empirical bounds reported in the literature (in sharp contrast to the implausibly low values under RE). Effectiveness of fiscal policy is demonstrated during times of economic stress like the recent Great Recession. Finally it is shown how learning can lead to dynamics empirically documented during episodes of "fiscal consolidations."

Suggested Citation

  • Kaushik Mitra & George W. Evans & Seppo Honkapohja, 2012. "Fiscal Policy and Learning," CDMA Working Paper Series 201202, Centre for Dynamic Macroeconomic Analysis, revised 18 Jun 2013.
  • Handle: RePEc:san:cdmawp:1202
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Stephen J. Cole, 2020. "The Limits of Central Bank forward Guidance under Learning," International Journal of Central Banking, International Journal of Central Banking, vol. 16(4), pages 199-250, September.
    2. Hollmayr, Josef & Matthes, Christian, 2015. "Learning about fiscal policy and the effects of policy uncertainty," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 59(C), pages 142-162.
    3. Richter, Alexander W. & Throckmorton, Nathaniel A., 2015. "The consequences of an unknown debt target," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 78(C), pages 76-96.
    4. Mitra, Kaushik & Evans, George W. & Honkapohja, Seppo, 2013. "Policy change and learning in the RBC model," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 37(10), pages 1947-1971.
    5. Stephen J. Cole, 2021. "Learning and the Effectiveness of Central Bank Forward Guidance," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 53(1), pages 157-200, February.
    6. Alexander D. Gromov, 2017. "The Efficiency of Russian Higher Education Institutions and its Determinants," HSE Working papers WP BRP 40/EDU/2017, National Research University Higher School of Economics.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Government Purchases; Expectations; Output Multiplier; Fiscal Consolidation; Taxation.;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy
    • D84 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Expectations; Speculations
    • E21 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Consumption; Saving; Wealth
    • E43 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Interest Rates: Determination, Term Structure, and Effects

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