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The aim of this paper is to investigate the influence of fiscal rules on the budgetary outcomes in 27 European Union countries. In particular, the paper focuses on assessing whether the impact of fiscal rules is statistically significant and numerically meaningful. In order to assess the influence, we use a dynamic panel data model. In our baseline model, we introduce the fiscal rule index as an explanatory variable. Our estimation rests on the fiscal reaction function. The analysis shows that the fiscal rule index positively affects the cyclically-adjusted primary balance and the cyclicallyadjusted balance.

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In this paper we aim to investigate what role fiscal cycles played in the development of the Hungarian state budget balances since the change of regime in 1989 until the parliamentary elections held in 2010. The literature has found that political budget cycles (PBC) are more typical in less developed countries with a shorter period of experience with democratic institutions, like the post-socialist transition economies. Nevertheless, empirical studies point out that this phenomenon has been disappearing over time. By testing the six parliamentary elections in Hungary until 2010, we show that discretional governmental actions of pork barrel spending were apparent more or less in almost each election period, peaking in the last decade. The most typical form of the fiscal cycles in Hungary proved to be social transfers to households including old-age benefits, family support or price subsidies, but also public sector wages were subject to PBC. As a result, state budget balances were significantly shaped by the cyclical movements of fiscal laxity and restrictions, resulting in strong fluctuations in fiscal balances and an overall high budget deficits in the two decades under review.

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The purpose of this article is to study the impact of fiscal policy on economic growth in Bulgaria for the period 1995–2018. The descriptive analysis is focused on the general trends in fiscal policy and tax structure. The influence of government spending and taxation on economic growth is studied through regressions on time-series data. The empirical estimates prove that taxation is a more reliable instrument of fiscal policy than government spending in terms of a small open emerging-market economy. The dilution of the effect of public spending is probably caused by the high negative values of the current account balance that have been maintained for long periods. Thus, when domestic supply is weak, government expenditure cannot stimulate domestic production, as supply is dominated by import goods. Public investments demonstrate a negative effect on economic growth, which suggests a low productivity of investment spending. A factor of great importance is the level of corruption, which is strongly correlated with government investments, but is harmful to their efficiency. The Bulgarian tax system demonstrates consistency with economic growth. The receipts from value-added tax seems growth-conductive. The decrease of the corporate income tax rate exerts a positive impact on economc performance during the analyzed period, while personal income taxation demonstrates a negative effect. Property taxation has no significant relation with the growth of the Bulgarian economy.

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This paper analyses the impact of public debt level and its (un)sustainability on fiscal policy in Croatia in the 2001–2015 period. A switching regression approach is used to distinguish different regimes when government spending, i.e. fiscal policy has more or less impact on economic growth during different cycles. In the second part, the structural VAR model is used to analyse the dynamic effects of government spending on domestic demand in Croatia. To observe the public debt effects on a fiscal policy, a “closed” model is compared with an “extended” model which includes a debtto- GDP indicator. Results show a negative impact of recession on public debt sustainability and confirm the main thesis that public debt level significantly affects and reduces the effectiveness of fiscal policy in Croatia.

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The article discusses how and why Green Recovery could be beneficial for the Visegrad countries based on a modelling exercise using the E3ME macroeconometric model. Green Recovery is defined as including policies in recovery plans that not only target economic recovery, but also contribute to environmental targets. The paper proposes that a Green Recovery could be valuable and suitable for the region contributing to both restoring employment and boosting economic activity as well as reaching climate goals. This is tested through a macroeconomic simulation, using the E3ME model. E3ME is built on Post-Keynesian economic theory and on econometric estimations of macroeconomic relationships. The results of the analysis focus on three dimensions: (1) social – employment, (2) environmental – level of CO2 emissions and (3) economic activity – gross domestic product (GDP). Outcomes indicate that a green recovery can shorten the time needed for employment and economic recovery as well as contributes to CO2 emission reductions. In Hungary, Czechia and Poland, the impact persists into the long-term; however, the paper also concludes that countries with high reliance on coal (e.g. Poland) could return to coal in the long term if no further policies are introduced.

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Although Ethiopia is one of the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC), there is a lack of empirical studies about the determinants of its external indebtedness. This paper aims to fill this gap by examining the macroeconomic determinants of the external indebtedness of Ethiopia between 1981 and 2016, using the two- and three-gap models as a theoretical framework and an autoregressive distributed lag bound testing approach. The result shows that in the long run, the savings-investment gap, trade deficit, fiscal deficit, and debt service have a positive and significant impact on external indebtedness. However, the growth rate of gross domestic product, trade openness, and inflation negatively and significantly affect the external indebtedness of the country. These results coincide with the predictions of the two- and three-gap models of the theoretical framework. The study argues that appropriate macroeconomic, social, and supply-side policies are essential to reducing the external indebtedness of Ethiopia.

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This paper addresses the experiences and challenges of Hungary’s monetary policy during the period 1995–2000 and in view of the progress toward EU and EMU membership. The structure of relative prices changed markedly in the past and is expected to continue to change in the future. The reason, in addition to a possible Balassa–Samuelson effect, was the elimination of subsidies and introduction of turnover taxes in the past, and a future convergence toward a price structure prevalent in the EU. In the 1995–2000 period, the resulting gap between CPI and PPI led to massive foreign capital inflows. While the policy of sterilised interventions by the National Bank of Hungary was probably the right answer, it was inevitably costly, and was made costlier than necessary by the way it was carried out. Continued adjustments in the price structure in the future will confront monetary policy with the same dilemmas and, resulting in an inflation floor, will complicate the country’s conditions of joining EMU within a reasonable time frame after EU accession.

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In this paper, we use the structural VAR model to analyse the dynamic effects of (discretionary) fiscal shocks on the economic activity of the private sector in Croatia between 2000 and 2012. Due to the fact that Croatia is a small open transition economy, we assume that shocks of foreign origin can have notable effects on its performance. Therefore, the original Blanchard-Perotti identification method is extended by introducing variables that represent external (foreign) demand shocks. The results show that government spending has a positive and statistically significant effect on private aggregate demand and private consumption, and that net indirect taxes have a negative and statistically significant effect on private consumption and private investment.

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In this article the effects of government infrastructure investment in a small open economy environment are analysed. Apart from enhancing the country’s output directly, government spending on capital — modelled here as development of public infrastructure — creates positive externalities in the production process of the private sector. Short- and long-run effects of ambitious development programs, depending on the source of financing (transfers or loans from abroad), are addressed. The empirical relevance of the quantitative conclusions to be derived from the present stylised form of the model is admittedly limited. However, the qualitative conclusions can add some new insights and contribute to the lively debate on the expected effects of government investments and EU transfers on macroeconomic development.

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This paper uses a multi-region DSGE model with collateral constrained households and residential investment to examine the effectiveness of fiscal policy stimulus measures in a credit crisis. The paper explores alternative scenarios which differ by the type of budgetary measure, their length, the degree of monetary accommodation and the level of international coordination. In particular we provide estimates for New EU Member States where we take into account two aspects. First, debt denomination in foreign currency and second, higher nominal interest rates, which makes it less likely that the Central Bank is restricted by the zero bound and will consequently not accommodate a fiscal stimulus. We also compare our results to other recent results obtained in the literature on fiscal policy which generally do not consider credit constrained households.

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