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Mr. Yan Carriere-Swallow, Mr. Antonio David, and Mr. Daniel Leigh
We estimate the short-term effects of fiscal consolidation on economic activity in 14 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean. We examine contemporaneous policy documents to identify changes in fiscal policy motivated by a desire to reduce the budget deficit and not by responding to prospective economic conditions. Based on this narrative dataset, our estimates suggest that fiscal consolidation has contractionary effects on GDP, consistent with a multiplier of 0.9. We find these effects to be close to those in OECD countries based on a similarly constructed dataset (Devries and others, 2011). We also find similar estimation results for the two groups of economies for the effect of fiscal consolidation on the external current account balance, providing support for the twin deficits hypothesis.
Ms. Selma Mahfouz, Mr. Richard Hemming, and Mr. Michael Kell
Ms. Selma Mahfouz, Mr. Richard Hemming, and Mr. Michael Kell

This paper reviews the theoretical and empirical literature on the effectiveness of fiscal policy. The focus is on the size of fiscal multipliers, and on the possibility that multipliers can turn negative (i.e., that fiscal contractions can be expansionary). The paper concludes that fiscal multipliers are overwhelmingly positive but small. However, there is some evidence of negative fiscal multipliers.

International Monetary Fund
International coordination of macroeconomic policies has attracted much attention in recent years. The main issue has been whether economic performance can be improved by coordination Although it is still a controversial issue many economists have argued that coordination would make a positive contribution to economic performance. This paper deals with the requirements for successful fiscal coordination. It concludes that those requirements are such that the best fiscal policies that countries can pursue are those aimed at putting their houses in order.
Mr. Marcello M. Estevão and Issouf Samaké
The past several years of recession and slow recovery have raised much interest on the effect of fiscal stimulus on economic activity, even as high public debts in many countries would call for fiscal consolidation. To evaluate the delicate balance between stimulus and consolidation requires measuring the size of fiscal multipliers, which often depends on having quarterly data so that exogenous fiscal policy shocks can be identified. We estimate fiscal multipliers using a novel methodology for identifying fiscal shocks within a structural vector autoregressive approach using annual data while controling for debt feedback effects. The estimation focuses on regions with scarce quarterly data (mostly low-income countries), and uses results for advanced economies, emerging market countries, and other broad groupings for which alternative estimates are available to validate the methodology. Differently from advanced and emerging market economies, fiscal consolidation in low-income countries has only a small temporary negative effect on growth while raising medium-term output. Shifting the composition of public spending toward capital expenditure further supports long-run growth.
Ms. Selma Mahfouz, Mr. Richard Hemming, and Mr. Michael Kell
This paper reviews the theoretical and empirical literature on the effectiveness of fiscal policy. The focus is on the size of fiscal multipliers, and on the possibility that multipliers can turn negative (i.e., that fiscal contractions can be expansionary). The paper concludes that fiscal multipliers are overwhelmingly positive but small. However, there is some evidence of negative fiscal multipliers.
International Monetary Fund

International coordination of macroeconomic policies has attracted much attention in recent years. The main issue has been whether economic performance can be improved by coordination Although it is still a controversial issue many economists have argued that coordination would make a positive contribution to economic performance. This paper deals with the requirements for successful fiscal coordination. It concludes that those requirements are such that the best fiscal policies that countries can pursue are those aimed at putting their houses in order.

Davide Furceri and Ms. Aleksandra Zdzienicka

This paper provides new evidence on the existence and magnitude of the “twin deficits” in developing economies. It finds that a one percent of GDP unanticipated increase in the government budget balance improves, on average, the current account balance by 0.8 percentage point of GDP. This effect is substantially larger than that obtained using standard measures of fiscal impulse, such as the cyclically-adjusted budget balance. The results point to heterogeneity across countries and over time. The effect tends to be larger: (i) during recessions; in countries (ii) that are more open to trade; (iii) that have less flexible exchange rate regimes; and (iv) with lower initial public debt-to-GDP ratios.

Mr. Robert Brandon Kahn, Mr. Adam Bennett, Ms. María Vicenta Carkovic S., and Ms. Susan M Schadler

Abstract

This paper explores the experience of six countries (Chile, Colombia, Egypt, Mexico, Spain and Thailand) with capital inflows. It illustrates that although capital inflows are usually beneficial, too great an inflow can become a problem and make it difficult for authorities to choose the appropriate policy response.

Mr. Jacob A. Frenkel and Mr. Morris Goldstein

Abstract

International coordination of macroeconomic policies has attracted much attention in recent years. The main issue has been whether economic performance can be improved by coordination. Although it is still a controversial issue, many economists have argued that coordination would make a positive contribution to economic performance. This paper deals with the requirements for successful fiscal coordination. It concludes that those requirements are such that the best fiscal policies that countries can pursue are those aimed at putting their houses in order.