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Restoring Public Debt SustainabilityThe Role of Independent Fiscal Institutions$
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George Kopits

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199644476

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199644476.001.0001

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Independent Fiscal Institutions in the Face of Rising Public Indebtedness

Independent Fiscal Institutions in the Face of Rising Public Indebtedness

Chapter:
(p.75) 5 Independent Fiscal Institutions in the Face of Rising Public Indebtedness
Source:
Restoring Public Debt Sustainability
Author(s):

Julia I. Bertelsmann

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199644476.003.0005

The author presents a number of arguments for the establishment of independent institutions to improve fiscal sustainability and avert debt crises. The main argument is based on recent empirical literature suggesting that high levels of public debt appear to reduce economic growth. Yet, in spite of the costs, governments have an observed tendency to accumulate excessive debt. Based on theories drawn from behavioural economics and political economy, the author discusses a set of functions that can be performed by independent fiscal institutions—especially by making the public sector more transparent and offering cogent analysis on the macroeconomic and fiscal effects of various policies—to help governments eliminate deficit bias and preserve public debt sustainability.

Keywords:   Public debt sustainability, deficit bias, growth and public debt, role of independent fiscal institutions, fiscal transparency, effects of fiscal policy

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