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Fiscal policy and debt dynamics in developing countries

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  • Ilzetzki, Ethan

Abstract

Using a new tax database for 28 countries and a variety of econometric methods, this paper contributes to the debate on the effects of fiscal policy on economic activity in a number of ways. The analysis finds that tax cuts have a stimulative effect on economic growth in developing countries. Lowering the personal income tax rate by 1 percentage point, or cutting revenues by 1 gross domestic product of gross domestic product increases gross domestic product by 0.3-0.4 percent on impact and 0.8 percent in the long run. The author finds that cuts in personal income taxes are more effective in stimulating growth than cuts in corporate or valued added tax rates. The author incorporates debt dynamics into a fiscal vector autoregression model for a number of developing countries. Existing estimates of the effects of fiscal policy on growth use linear time-series methods, which may assess the effects of fiscal policy along a debt-path that is unsustainable. Incorporating the non-linear relationship between government expenditure, taxes, and debt alters estimates of the impact of fiscal policy on gross domestic product in several countries. In Brazil, for example, conventional time-series methods may overstate the effects of fiscal policy on gross domestic product, by ignoring the detrimental effects of debt accumulation.

Suggested Citation

  • Ilzetzki, Ethan, 2011. "Fiscal policy and debt dynamics in developing countries," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5666, The World Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:5666
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Marcello M. Estevão & Issouf Samaké, 2013. "The Economic Effects of Fiscal Consolidation with Debt Feedback," IMF Working Papers 13/136, International Monetary Fund.
    2. Ilzetzki, Ethan & Mendoza, Enrique G. & Végh, Carlos A., 2013. "How big (small?) are fiscal multipliers?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 239-254.
    3. Alfred A. Haug & Tomasz Jedrzejowicz & Anna Sznajderska, 2013. "Combining Monetary and Fiscal Policy in an SVAR for a Small Open Economy," Working Papers 1313, University of Otago, Department of Economics, revised Oct 2013.
    4. Şen, Hüseyin & Kaya, Ayşe, 2017. "How large are fiscal multipliers in Turkey?," EconStor Preprints 162763, ZBW - German National Library of Economics.
    5. Mertens, Karel & Ravn, Morten O., 2014. "A reconciliation of SVAR and narrative estimates of tax multipliers," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(S), pages 1-19.
    6. Carlo Favero & Francesco Giavazzi & Jacopo Perego, 2011. "Country Heterogeneity and the International Evidence on the Effects of Fiscal Policy," IMF Economic Review, Palgrave Macmillan;International Monetary Fund, vol. 59(4), pages 652-682, November.
    7. Riera-Crichton, Daniel & Vegh, Carlos A. & Vuletin, Guillermo, 2016. "Tax multipliers: Pitfalls in measurement and identification," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(C), pages 30-48.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Debt Markets; Taxation&Subsidies; Emerging Markets; Economic Theory&Research; Tax Law;

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