Discussion Paper Details

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Title: An Analysis of the 'Stability Pact'

Author(s): Roel Beetsma and Harald Uhlig

Publication Date: July 1997

Keyword(s): Debt Policy, European Monetary Union, Inflation, Monetary Policy, Political Distortions and Stability Pact

Programme Area(s): International Macroeconomics

Abstract: We analyse the proposed ?stability pact? for countries joining a European Monetary Union (EMU). Within EMU shortsighted governments fail to fully internalize the inflationary consequences of their debt policies, which results in excessive debt accumulation. Hence, although in the absence of EMU governments have no incentive to sign a stability pact, within EMU they prefer a stability pact which punishes excessive debt accumulation. With idiosyncratic shocks to governments? budgets, EMU combined with an appropriately designed stability pact will be strictly preferred to autonomy. While the stability pact corrects the average debt bias, inflation, which is attuned to the Union-average debt level, is more stable.

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Bibliographic Reference

Beetsma, R and Uhlig, H. 1997. 'An Analysis of the 'Stability Pact''. London, Centre for Economic Policy Research.