NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Can Public Sector Wage Bills Be Reduced?

Pierre Cahuc, Stéphane Carcillo

Chapter in NBER book Fiscal Policy after the Financial Crisis (2013), Alberto Alesina and Francesco Giavazzi, editors (p. 359 - 402)
Conference held December 12-13, 2011
Published in June 2013 by University of Chicago Press
© 2013 by the National Bureau of Economic Research

This chapter examines the adjustment of public wage bills and public deficits over business and political cycles, and is organized as follows. Section 9.2 presents the relation between public deficits and public wage bills in Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries over the last fifteen years, while Section 9.3 describes fiscal drift and fiscal tightening episodes. Section 9.4 analyzes the relations between the occurrence of fiscal drift and fiscal tightening episodes and the economic cycles, the election years, the transparency of governments, the freedom of the press, the union coverage, the political regime, and the electoral rules.

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This chapter first appeared as NBER working paper w17881, Can Public Sector Wage Bills Be Reduced?, Pïerre Cahuc, Stephane Carcillo
Commentary on this chapter: Comment, Paolo Pinotti
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