NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Political Economics and Macroeconomic Policy

Torsten Persson, Guido Tabellini

NBER Working Paper No. 6329
Issued in December 1997
NBER Program(s):   ME

This paper surveys the recent literature on the theory of macroeconomic policy. We study the effect of various incentive constraints on the policy making process, such as lack of credibility, political opportunism, political ideology, and divided government. The survey is organized in three parts. Part I deals with monetary policy in a simply Phillips curve model: it covers credibility issues, political business cycles, and optimal design of monetary institutions. Part II deals with fiscal policy in a dynamic general equilibrium set up: the main topics here are credibility of tax policy, and political determinants of budget deficits. Part III studies economic growth in models with endogenous fiscal policy.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w6329

Published: Handbook of Macroeconomics, Taylor, J. and M. Woodford, eds., North Holland, Amsterdam: 1999.

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