IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

The political economy of fiscal policy and inflation in developing countries : an empirical analysis

  • Edwards, Sebastian
  • Tabellini, Guido

Most economists treat fiscal policy as exogenous and consider policymakers as machines to be programmed. Rarely do they seek to determine why, for instance, some countries rely on the inflation tax while others use direct taxation, let alone what political factors affect such decisions. Yet without a theory of how fiscal policymakers behave, at both the revenue and the expenditure levels, there is no guarantee that policy advice will turn out to be sound. The authors present the results of an empirical analysis of the political economy of fiscal policy for a group of developing countries. They look at alternative ways of incorporating political variables into the explanation of government policy actions. Dividing their results into three sections, one each for inflation, budget deficits, and devaluations, they find that: (a) the equilibrium inflation rate is higher the more citizens disagree about which party should hold office, and the more unlikely it is that the government currently in office will be reappointed; (b) political instability and polarization lead to a collective myopia that sometimes tempts policymakers to borrow too heavily and to leave the bills to their successors; and (c) governments tend to implement adjustment policies early in their tenure when they command political authority, but if political conflict arises, they may lack the strength to change the macroeconomic status quo and will resort instead to inflation and deficits.

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: http://www-wds.worldbank.org/servlet/WDSContentServer/WDSP/IB/1991/06/01/000009265_3961001152255/Rendered/PDF/multi0page.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 703.

as
in new window

Length:
Date of creation: 30 Jun 1991
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:703
Contact details of provider: Postal: 1818 H Street, N.W., Washington, DC 20433
Phone: (202) 477-1234
Web page: http://www.worldbank.org/
Email:


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. Mankiw, N. Gregory, 1987. "The optimal collection of seigniorage : Theory and evidence," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 327-341, September.
  2. Vito Tanzi, 1977. "Inflation, Lags in Collection, and the Real Value of Tax Revenue (L'inflation, les retards de recouvrement et la valeur réelle des recettes fiscales) (Inflación, desfases en la recaudación y valor ," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 24(1), pages 154-167, March.
  3. Morris Goldstein & Peter Montiel, 1986. "Evaluating Fund Stabilization Programs with Multicountry Data: Some Methodological Pitfalls (Evaluation des programmes de stabilisation du Fonds à partir de données sur divers pays: quelques écueils," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 33(2), pages 304-344, June.
  4. Alesina, Alberto & Drazen, Allan, 1991. "Why Are Stabilizations Delayed?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(5), pages 1170-88, December.
  5. Poterba, James M & Rotemberg, Julio J, 1990. "Inflation and Taxation with Optimizing Governments," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 22(1), pages 1-18, February.
  6. Alex Cukierman & Sebastian Edwards & Guido Tabellini, 1989. "Seigniorage and Political Instability," NBER Working Papers 3199, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Faig, Miquel, 1988. "Characterization of the optimal tax on money when it functions as a medium of exchange," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 137-148, July.
  8. 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.
  9. Joshua Aizenman, 1985. "Inflation, Tariffs and Tax Enforcement Costs," NBER Working Papers 1712, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Kimbrough, Kent P., 1986. "The optimum quantity of money rule in the theory of public finance," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(3), pages 277-284, November.
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:wbk:wbrwps:703. 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: (Roula I. Yazigi)

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.