OECD Economics Department Working Papers

Working papers from the Economics Department of the OECD that cover the full range of the Department’s work including the economic situation, policy analysis and projections; fiscal policy, public expenditure and taxation; and structural issues including ageing, growth and productivity, migration, environment, human capital, housing, trade and investment, labour markets, regulatory reform, competition, health, and other issues.

The views expressed in these papers are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect those of the OECD or of the governments of its member countries.

English, French

Overheating in Small Euro Area Economies

Should Fiscal Policy React?

This paper reviews first the fiscal policy recommendations by the EU, the IMF and the OECD for Finland, Greece, Ireland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal and Spain. All these countries had inflation above the euro area average in early 2001, some by a considerable margin. The fiscal policy prescriptions deviate little, the EU, the IMF and the OECD generally recommending an active use of fiscal policy. There are some exceptions, however. The next section examines indicators of excess demand in these countries. This is followed by a review of the factors that help or hinder market-based adjustment, including simulations to gauge their effect. Market-based adjustment to demand shocks depends critically on whether the effect of a lower real interest rate is strong relative to the loss in competitiveness, on the size of wealth effects, on wage and price setting behavior, on the supply response and on the strength of trade integration. Simulations suggest that market-based ...


Keywords: European Union, fiscal policy
JEL: H6: Public Economics / National Budget, Deficit, and Debt; E6: Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics / Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook
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