nep-pbe New Economics Papers
on Public Economics
Issue of 2012‒11‒24
25 papers chosen by
Keunjae Lee
Pusan National University

  1. The Swedish Inheritance and Gift Taxation, 1885–2004 By Du Rietz, Gunnar; Henrekson, Magnus; Waldenström, Daniel
  2. Form follows function? Evidence on tax savings by multinational holding structures By Dreßler, Daniel
  3. Tax policy response to market changes: the case of the gaming services sector. By Valeria De Bonis; Alessandro Gandolfo
  4. Fiscal illusion and the shadow economy: Two sides of the same coin? By Buehn , Andreas; Dell'Anno, Roberto; Schneider, Friedrich
  5. Revenue and expenditure nexus: A case study of ECOWAS By Magazzino, Cosimo
  6. Comparative fiscal illusion: A fiscal illusion index for the European Union By Dell'Anno, Roberto; Dollery, Brian
  7. Public Goods in a Voluntary Federal Union: Implications of a Participation Constraint By Aronsson, Thomas; Micheletto, Luca; Sjögren, Tomas
  8. Tax Compliance and Psychic Costs: Behavioral Experimental Evidence Using a Physiological Marker By Uwe Dulleck; Jonas Fooken; Cameron Newton; Andrea Ristl; Markus Schaffner; Benno Torgler
  9. Inter-jurisdictional migration and the size of government By Giuranno, Michele G.; Rongili, Biswas
  10. On the New Methodology of Cost‐Benefit Analysis of ALMP – The Case of Serbia By Zubović, Jovan; Simeunović, Ivana
  11. Is bioenergy trade good for the environment? By Jean-Marc Bourgeon; Helene Ollivier
  12. E-books: Developments and Policy Considerations By OECD
  13. Social Spending and Income Redistribution in Argentina During the 2000s: the Rising Role of Noncontributory Pensions By Nora Lustig; Carola Pessino
  14. Debt rule federalism: The case of Germany By Ciaglia, Sarah; Heinemann, Friedrich
  15. Parties, institutions and political budget cycles at the municipal level By Marika Cioffi; Giovanna Messina; Pietro Tommasino
  16. A Model of Economic Growth with Public Finance: Dynamics and Analytic Solution By O.A. Carboni; P. Russu
  17. Developing expenditure questions: Findings from R1 cognitive testing By Jo d'Ardenne; Margaret Blake
  18. Fiscal Stimulus and Labor Market Dynamics in Japan By Ryuta Ray Kato; Hiroaki Miyamoto
  19. The world's dream: economic growth [:]the balance sheet approach By DE KONING, Kees
  20. Determinants of fiscal budget volatility in old versus new EU member states By Mara, Eugenia-Ramona
  21. Notional defined contribution pension schemes and income patterns By Nisticò, Sergio; Bevilacqua, Mirko
  22. Spatial Climate-Economic Models in the Design of Optimal Climate Policies Across Locations By William A. Brock; Gustav Engström; Anastasios Xepapadeas
  23. Security of Property as a Public Good: Institutions, Socio-Political Environment and Experimental Behavior in Five Countries By Campos-Ortiz, Francisco; Putterman, Louis; Ahn, T.K.; Balafoutas, Loukas; Batsaikhan, Mongoljin; Sutter, Matthias
  24. Providing Agri-environmental Public Goods through Collective Action: Lessons from New Zealand Case Studies By Uetake, Tetsuya
  25. Variable Mortgage Rate Pricing in Ireland By Goggin, Jean; Holton, Sarah; Kelly, Jane; Lydon, Reamonn; McQuinn, Kieran

  1. By: Du Rietz, Gunnar (Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IFN)); Henrekson, Magnus (Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IFN)); Waldenström, Daniel (Department of Economics)
    Abstract: This paper studies the evolution of the modern Swedish inheritance taxation from its introduction in 1885 to its abolishment in 2004. A thorough description is offered of the basic principles of the tax, including underlying ideas and ambitions, tax schedules, and rules concerning valuation of assets, liability matters and deduction opportunities. Using these rules, we calculate inheritance tax rates for the whole period for a number of differently endowed family firms and individuals. The overall trend in inheritance tax burden exhibits an inverse-U shape for all firms and individuals. Up until World War II, inheritance tax rates were very low (never above six percent), but in the postwar era tax rates increased rapidly for both inherited firms and individual fortunes. Effective tax rates peaked in the mid-1970s. Valuation reliefs were introduced in the 1970s, which sharply reduced tax rates for inherited family businesses. Tax rates for deceased individuals were first cut in 1987 and then significantly reduced in 1991–1992. Finally, inheritance and gift tax revenues were relatively small, around a quarter of a percent of GDP.
    Keywords: Gift tax; Inheritance tax; Estate tax; Tax avoidance; Excess burden; Entrepreneurship; Ownership transfers of family firms
    JEL: D31 H20 K34
    Date: 2012–11–06
  2. By: Dreßler, Daniel
    Abstract: I provide evidence on the group structures of multinationals and analyze to what extent these structures are tax efficient. While the corporate income tax can hardly be avoided if a subsidiary is active in a country, withholding taxes depend on the structure in which the subsidiary is embedded. By vertically inserting holding companies or adjusting the superior/subordinate relationship of subsidiaries, multinationals can often influence their total tax burden, especially regarding the repatriation of profits by means of dividends. I analyze group structures across 58 countries in the years 1996 to 2008 using the MiDi database provided by the German Central Bank (Deutsche Bundesbank). The results show that a higher withholding tax between two members of a group located in different countries increases the probability of indirect participation. However, in about half of the observations, the existence of an intermediate subsidiary does not lower the overall tax burden, and in 5% of the cases the tax burden on repatriated profits with such a holding company is even higher than without it. Although group structures generally seem to be tax driven, there are non-tax influencing factors which sometimes prevail. Besides drivers of the vertical company structure, I provide evidence of a horizontal driver: once a form of group taxation is available, groups seem to spread their national investments across more subsidiaries. --
    Keywords: Corporate Taxation,Foreign Direct Investment,Holdings,Multinational Firms,Withholding Taxes
    JEL: F23 H25 H32
    Date: 2012
  3. By: Valeria De Bonis; Alessandro Gandolfo
    Abstract: Beginning with the 1990’s, the gaming services sector has undergone several changes that have induced governments to review gambling taxes. We examine the economic rationale behind actual and prospected reforms, comparing different tax instruments with respect to their incidence.
    Keywords: gaming sector; government policy and regulation; taxation incidence.
    JEL: H22 K34 M38
    Date: 2012–11–01
  4. By: Buehn , Andreas; Dell'Anno, Roberto; Schneider, Friedrich
    Abstract: This paper presents an empirical analysis of the relationship between fiscal illusion and the shadow economy for 104 countries over the period 1989–2009. We argue that both unobservable phenomena are closely linked to each other, as the creation of a fiscal illusion may be helpful if governments want to control shadow economic activities. Using a MIMIC model with two latent variables we confirm previous findings on the driving forces of the shadow economy and identify the main determinants and indicators of fiscal illusion. Most importantly, we find that fiscal illusion negatively affects the shadow economy: Concealing the real tax burden through fiscal illusion potentially contributes to the government’s efforts to repress shadow economic activities.
    Keywords: Fiscal illusion; shadow economy; MIMIC model; latent variables; tax burden; tax complexity
    JEL: E62 O17 K42
    Date: 2012–11–09
  5. By: Magazzino, Cosimo
    Abstract: This paper aims to assess the relationship among fiscal variables (net lending, government expenditure and revenue) and economic growth in Sub-Saharan African countries. Using yearly data for the period between 1980 and 2011 in 15 ECOWAS countries, a weak long-run relationship between government expenditure and revenue emerge, but only in the case of WAMZ countries. Granger causality analysis showed mixed results for WAEMU countries, while for four out of six WAMZ countries (Gambia, Liberia, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone) the tax-and-spend hypothesis holds, since government revenue would drive the expenditure. Finally, in the last three decades, cyclical component of economic growth has reduced its fluctuations, both for WAEMU and WAMZ member States. --
    Keywords: ECOWAS,Sub-Saharan Africa,economic growth,government expenditure,government revenue,panel
    JEL: E62 F33 B22 C33
    Date: 2012
  6. By: Dell'Anno, Roberto; Dollery, Brian
    Abstract: This paper provides an empirical analysis of fiscal illusion by estimating an index of fiscal illusion for 28 European countries over the period 1995–2008 employing a structural equation approach. Using MIMIC models, the paper investigates the main indicators of fiscal illusion and develops an index of fiscal illusion. It concludes that the chief deterninants for the deployment of fiscal illusion strategies are the share of self-employment on total employment, the educational level of citizens, and the size of tax burden. At the same time, policy makers attempt to ‘conceal’ the real tax burden by means of debt illusion, fiscal drag, wage withholding taxes, as well as taxes on labour.
    Keywords: Fiscal illusion; Financial illusion; MIMIC model; European countries
    JEL: H8 O52 H3
    Date: 2012–11–09
  7. By: Aronsson, Thomas (Department of Economics); Micheletto, Luca (Uppsala Center for Fiscal Studies); Sjögren, Tomas (Department of Economics)
    Abstract: This paper re-examines the question of whether federal ex-post redistribution in terms of public funds leads to under-provision of public goods by adding the assumption that the member states are free to leave the economic federation. We show that federal ex-post redistribution leads to e¢ cient provision of local and federal public goods under certain conditions.
    Keywords: Public goods; …scal federalism; ex-post redistribution
    JEL: D61 H41 H77
    Date: 2012–11–13
  8. By: Uwe Dulleck; Jonas Fooken; Cameron Newton; Andrea Ristl; Markus Schaffner; Benno Torgler
    Abstract: Although paying taxes is a key element in a well-functioning civilized society, the understanding of why people pay taxes is still limited. What current evidence shows is that, given relatively low audit probabilities and penalties in case of tax evasion, compliance levels are higher than would be predicted by traditional economics-of-crime models. Models emphasizing that taxpayers make strategic, financially motivated compliance decisions, seemingly assume an overly restrictive view of human nature. Law abidance may be more accurately explained by social norms, a concept that has gained growing importance as a facet in better understanding the tax compliance puzzle. This study analyzes the relation between psychic cost arising from breaking social norms and tax compliance using a heart rate variability (HRV) measure that captures the psychobiological or neural equivalents of psychic costs (e.g., feelings of guilt or shame) that may arise from the contemplation of real or imagined actions and produce immediate consequential physiologic discomfort. Specifically, this nonintrusive HRV measurement method obtains information on activity in two branches of the autonomous nervous system (ANS), the excitatory sympathetic nervous system and the inhibitory parasympathetic system. Using time-frequency analysis of the (interpolated) heart rate signal, it identifies the level of activity (power) at different velocities of change (frequencies), whose LF (low frequency) to HF (high frequency band) ratio can be used as an index of sympathovagal balance or psychic stress. Our results, based on a large set of observations in a laboratory setting, provide empirical evidence of a positive correlation between psychic stress and tax compliance and thus underscore the importance of moral sentiment in the tax compliance context.
    Keywords: tax compliance; psychic costs; stress; tax morale; cooperation; heart rate variability; biomarkers; experiment
    JEL: H26 H41 K42 D31 D63 C91
    Date: 2012–11
  9. By: Giuranno, Michele G.; Rongili, Biswas
    Abstract: This paper develops a model of centralized public spending where decision-makers are the regional median voters instead of the national median voter of the received literature. Regional representatives decide the level of public spending by bargaining in the central legislature. We study how exogenous changes in the composition of the regional electorate either deteriorate or mitigate inter-jurisdictional redistributive conflicts and how these, in turn, influence the size of the government. We find the conditions under which migration-induced inter-regional income convergence (divergence) leads either to a bigger or a smaller government. Finally, the relationship between migration and efficiency is explored within the present framework.
    Keywords: Demographic Changes; Government Spending; Inequality; Redistribution; Bargaining; Political Economy Theory
    JEL: H50 R1 D30 H41 D78 H00
    Date: 2012–10–29
  10. By: Zubović, Jovan; Simeunović, Ivana
    Abstract: Active labour market policies are commonly used tool to fight unemployment. In the late 1970s in most developed countries of OECD government expenditures on those policies reached up to 1.5% of GDP. This created a need to evaluate the impact of such measures and perform cost‐benefit analyses. Evaluations have in the previous 30 years been undertaken by using several methods: experimental and quasi‐experimental, measurements and evaluations of processes performance, micro and macro analyses. In this paper we have presented and tested a modified approach of cost‐benefit analysis of ALMP viewed as an investment made by a government. The goal was to determine whether by using such an approach it is possible to provide new information to policy makers and to deepen research and further develop a methodology which will be robust enough to serve as a proof of ALMP effectiveness. Initial results of the empirical research in Serbia show very positive results, indicating that especially in the period of recessions, active measures can significantly improve labour market conditions, thus create high levels of return to investments (taking ALMP as an investment). Using aggregate data on all persons being registered as unemployed at the beginning of 2008 and 2009, we have tested how the ALMP impact the potential growth of tax returns. Our findings say that in 2008 there has been a net gain of € 269 million and in 2009 € 166 million in tax returns collected.
    Keywords: Active policies; evaluation; unemployment
    JEL: E24 J68
    Date: 2012–03–15
  11. By: Jean-Marc Bourgeon (Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique - INRA, Department of Economics, Ecole Polytechnique - CNRS : UMR7176 - Polytechnique - X); Helene Ollivier (ARE - Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics - University of California, Berkeley)
    Abstract: We analyze the impacts of bioenergy trade on greenhouse gas emissions using a two-good, three-factor model. Bioenergy is an agricultural good used as a substitute for fossil fuels in industry. Governments tax domestic pollution without international coordination. We assume that northern countries have higher labor productivity than southern ones and that agriculture is less pollution intensive than industry (after taxation). We show that whereas southern countries impose a lower tax rate than northern ones, they do not necessary have a competitive advantage in industry, and that compared to autarky, trade liberalization either increases or decreases worldwide emissions depending on regional comparative advantages.
    Keywords: Bioenergy; Intermediate product; North-South trade; Global pollution
    Date: 2012–04
  12. By: OECD
    Abstract: Books have undergone a massive transformation from a physical object to something entirely different: the electronic book, or “e-book”. This report provides background on e-book markets and examines various policy issues related to e-books. These include differing tax rates in countries between physical books and e-books, consumer lock-in to specific platforms, limitations on how users can read and share their purchased content, and a lack of transparency about how data on their reading habits is being used.
    Date: 2012–10–29
  13. By: Nora Lustig; Carola Pessino
    Abstract: Between 2003 and 2009, Argentina’s social spending as a share of GDP increased by 7.6 percentage points. Marginal benefit incidence analysis for 2003, 2006, and 2009 suggests that the contribution of cash transfers to the reduction of disposable income inequality and poverty rose markedly between 2006 and 2009 primarily due to the launching of a noncontributory pension program – the pension moratorium – in 2004. Noncontributory pensions as a share of GDP rose by 2.2 percentage points between 2003 and 2009 and entailed a redistribution of income to the poor, and from the formal sector pensioners with above minimum pensions to the beneficiaries of the pension moratorium. The redistributive impact of the expansion of public spending on education and health was also sizeable and equalizing, but to a lesser degree. An assessment of fiscal funding sources puts the sustainability of the redistributive policies into question, unless nonsocial spending is significantly cut.
    Keywords: social spending, benefit incidence, inequality, poverty, Argentina
    JEL: D31 H22 I38
    Date: 2012–11
  14. By: Ciaglia, Sarah; Heinemann, Friedrich
    Abstract: In 2009, Germany introduced a new debt rule in its federal constitution (Grundgesetz). The socalled 'debt brake' prescribes a balanced budget for both the federal level and the states. However, the states have leeway regarding transposition and specification of the national requirements into their own state constitutions and budgetary laws. This analysis presents a comprehensive comparison of the 16 state provisions. We develop an indicator which quantifies the stringency of state rules (Strength of Fiscal Rule Indicator). Two results emerge: First, despite the common constitutional rule at the federal level, the analysis reveals a considerable heterogeneity across German states. Second, several highly indebted states miss the chance to make their fiscal regime more credible. This finding corresponds to the disincentives of the German federation. Due to bailout-guarantees enshrined in German federalism, German states do not have incentives to impress bond markets through particularly strict budgetary rules. --
    Keywords: fiscal rules,debt brake,Germany,fiscal federalism
    JEL: H63 H74 H77
    Date: 2012
  15. By: Marika Cioffi (Bank of Italy); Giovanna Messina (Bank of Italy); Pietro Tommasino (Bank of Italy)
    Abstract: We study the magnitude, the determinants and the electoral consequences of pre-electoral fiscal manipulation by incumbent politicians. To this aim, we build a dataset covering all the Italian municipalities. We document several facts. First, there is a clear political cycle in the path of expenditures, driven by capital outlays. Second, only mayors not affiliated to a national political party induce an election-driven expenditure cycle. Third, pre-electoral expenditure boosts increase re-election prospects of the incumbent only if she is not affiliated to a party. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that national parties have both the incentives and the resources to curb the pre-electoral profligacy of party-affiliated mayors. We also consider the impact of formal institutions. In particular, we find that budget rules reduce the effects of the political cycle, whereas binding term limits seem to be ineffective.
    Keywords: political budget cycles, local public finance, political parties
    JEL: D72 H72
    Date: 2012–10
  16. By: O.A. Carboni; P. Russu
    Abstract: This paper studies the equilibrium dynamics of a growth model with public finance where two different allocations of public resources are considered. The model simultaneously determines the optimal shares of consumption, capital accumulation, taxes and composition of the two different public expenditures which maximize a representative household s lifetime utilities in a centralized economy. The analysis supplies a closed form solution. Moreover, with one restriction on the parameters (?=?) we fully determine the solutions path for all variables of the model and determine the conditions for balanced growth.
    Keywords: Growth models; Fiscal policy; Public spending composition
    JEL: H50 E13 O40 H20
    Date: 2012
  17. By: Jo d'Ardenne; Margaret Blake (Institute for Fiscal Studies and NatCen Social Research)
    Abstract: Currently there is no established way to measure expenditure in the context of a general purpose survey. Therefore NatCen's Questionnaire Development Testing (QDT) Hub, working in collaboration with the Institute for Fiscal Studies and collaborators from Oxford and Cambridge Universities, are looking at how best to measure expenditure in a social survey context. This report provides findings from the cognitive testing of four different question formats: 1. A 'one-shot' question i.e. a single question asking 'How much did you spend on everything in the last month?' 2. A 'two-part' question i.e. two questions, one that asks about spending on essentials and one that asks about spending on everything else. 3. A 'breakdown' question i.e. that asks respondents to say how much they spend on each item on a list of common types of expenditure 4. And 'income minus surplus' question that asks respondents to work out how much money they receive per month and how much of that income remains unspent. It is possible that spending can be calculated from this information. This project is funded by the Nuffield Foundation.
    Date: 2012–10
  18. By: Ryuta Ray Kato (International University of Japan); Hiroaki Miyamoto (International University of Japan)
    Abstract: The paper studies effects of fiscal expansion on the Japanese labor market. First, using a structural VAR model, we find that the unemployment rate falls and employment rises following an increase in government spending. We also find that fiscal expansion affects flows in and out of unemployment. While an increase in government spending increases the job-finding rate, it reduces the separation rate. We then incorporate search and matching frictions into a standard dynamic general equilibrium model, and study whether the model can explain what we observed in data. While the model fails to predict the exact size of the impact of the government spending shock on the Japanese labor market variables, it can consistently capture the empirical pattern of responses of labor market variables to the shock.
    Keywords: Policy, Unemployment, Labor market, Search and matching
    JEL: E24 E62 J64
    Date: 2012–11
  19. By: DE KONING, Kees
    Abstract: Economists may need to change their tools of analysis from analysing income and expenditure contributors (GDP) to asset value contributors -the net worth levels of individual households-. Assessment of the latter requires a balance sheet analysis. Why; because the level of individual households’ savings in the U.S currently stands at $62.7 trillion, GDP at $15.1 trillion and tax revenues at $2.4 trillion. Such U.S. analysis has to be made through the study of time series, not just for a single year. For instance the cause of the current crisis was the banker’s shift in action from recovering doubtful mortgage debts out of incomes to recovering them out of selling of home assets. This caused an extra supply of 880 000 second hand homes to come on the market every year from 2008. In stead of only affecting the 4.4 million doubtful debtors, it affected all 78.6 million home owners. Their loss was nearly equal to three years of U.S. Federal Government revenues. To counteract such savings losses requires adjustments in the U.S economic set up - the econsystem changes-. It also requires turning some assets -pension savings assets- temporarily into cash in order to support the income base of society in times of slow growth. Keeping unemployed people on the sideline of an economy is not the best way of earning one’s way out of income troubles.
    Keywords: balance sheet of households; net worth; financial crisis; economic growth; income to assets switch; economic easing; quantitative easing; Fannie Mae and Freddy Mac; bank restructuring; home mortgage process; fiscal cliff; econsystem
    JEL: E44 E21 G01 D53 G2 E58 E61 G21
    Date: 2012–11–12
  20. By: Mara, Eugenia-Ramona
    Abstract: In this study we perform an analysis of the volatility of the budget deficit for EU countries. We address this issue starting from the new requirements of fiscal discipline imposed by the Treaty on Stability, Coordination and Governance adopted by 25 European Union member states and taking into account the economic crisis impact. The major purpose of this study is to identify the most significant determinants of budget deficit volatility in a comparative study for old EU member states and New Member States (NMS). This study aims to test the impact of macroeconomic variables such as public expenditures, economic growth rate, and unemployment on the budget balance volatility, based on panel data. The final purpose of the article is to reveal the strategies to stop the immense increase in fiscal deficits and to regain fiscal stability to fulfill the new rules of fiscal governance. We anticipate that the implementation of this new fiscal discipline requires a more efficient public sector for both old and NMS and a reconsideration of state intervention in the economy.
    Keywords: budget deficit; fiscal policy; economic growth
    JEL: H62 E62 E61 H3
    Date: 2012–09
  21. By: Nisticò, Sergio; Bevilacqua, Mirko
    Abstract: During the 1990s, some important European countries such as Italy and Sweden radically transformed their public pension systems by adopting defined-contribution rules while retaining a pay-as-you-go financial architecture. The paper inquires into the theoretical properties of such notional defined contribution pension schemes in order to identify the determinants of the replacement rates awarded to individuals with different income patterns. Three typical career patterns are taken into consideration, according to whether the individual's wage growth is equal to, higher than, or lower than average wage growth. The impact of, and the possible remedies to, a possible discontinuity in replacement rates is assessed by means of a sensitivity analysis of replacement rates with respect to career length (for a given retirement age), the retirement age, and the rate of return credited to individual accounts. --
    Keywords: Notional Defined Contribution (NDC),replacement rates,income patterns
    JEL: H55
    Date: 2012
  22. By: William A. Brock (Department of Economics, University of Wisconsin); Gustav Engström (The Beijer Institute of Ecological Economics and University of Stockholm); Anastasios Xepapadeas (Athens University of Economics and Business)
    Abstract: We couple a one-dimensional energy balance climate model with heat transportation across latitudes, with an economic growth model. We derive temperature and damage distributions across locations and optimal taxes on fossil fuels which, in contrast to zero-dimensional Integrated Assessment Models, account for cross latitude externalities. We analyse the impact of welfare weights on the spatial structure of optimal carbon taxes and identify conditions under which these taxes are spatially nonhomogeneous and are lower in latitudes with relatively lower per capita income populations. We show the way that heat transportation affects local economic variables and taxes, and locate sufficient conditions for optimal mitigation policies to have rapid ramp-up initially and then decrease over time.
    Keywords: One-dimensional Energy Balance Model, Heat Transport, Latitudes, Temperature Distribution, Damage Distribution, Social Planner, Competitive Equilibrium, Local Welfare Weights, Optimal Taxes
    JEL: Q54 Q58 R11
    Date: 2012–10
  23. By: Campos-Ortiz, Francisco (Bank of Mexico); Putterman, Louis (Brown University); Ahn, T.K. (Seoul National University); Balafoutas, Loukas (University of Innsbruck); Batsaikhan, Mongoljin (Georgetown University); Sutter, Matthias (University of Innsbruck)
    Abstract: We study experimentally the protection of property in five widely distinct countries – Austria, Mexico, Mongolia, South Korea and the United States. Our main results are that the security of property varies with experimental institutions, and that our subject pools exhibit significantly different behaviors that correlate with country-level property security, trust and quality of government. Subjects from countries with higher levels of trust or perceptions of safety are more prone to abstain initially from theft and devote more resources to production, and subjects from countries with higher quality political institutions are more supportive of protecting property through compulsory taxation. This highlights the relevance of socio-political factors in determining countries' success in addressing collective action problems including safeguarding property rights.
    Keywords: experiment, efficiency, theft, property rights, socio-political factors
    JEL: C91 C92 D03 H41 P14
    Date: 2012–11
  24. By: Uetake, Tetsuya
    Abstract: Agriculture is a provider of food and, to a certain extent, public goods such as biodiversity and landscape, but it can also have negative impacts on natural assets such as biodiversity and water quality. In addition to implementing policies that target individual farmers, different approaches are needed to promote collective action. The literature review and three New Zealand case studies (Sustainable Farming Fund, East Coast Forestry Project and North Otago Irrigation Company) have identified some findings including benefits and barriers of collective action and key factors for its success. Collective action should be given serious consideration in addressing agri-environmental problems.
    Keywords: Collective action, public goods, agri-environmental policy, social capital, Agribusiness, Environmental Economics and Policy, Public Economics,
    Date: 2012–08
  25. By: Goggin, Jean (Central Bank of Ireland); Holton, Sarah (Central Bank of Ireland); Kelly, Jane (Central Bank of Ireland); Lydon, Reamonn (Central Bank of Ireland); McQuinn, Kieran (Central Bank of Ireland)
    Abstract: This Letter examines movements in the interest rates charged on variable rate mortgages. The results indicate that variable rates for all lenders closely followed changes in the ECB's policy rate, short-term wholesale rates and tracker rate mortgages until the end of 2008. Thereafter, the relationship breaks down, in part due to banks' increased market funding costs. It appears that some lenders with higher mortgage arrears rates and a greater proportion of tracker rate loans on their books exhibit higher variable rates. After controlling for these additional factors, most of the divergence between banks variable rates is explained, but there are some exceptions. There is also some evidence of asymmetric adjustment in rate setting behaviour: that is, rates tend to adjust slowly when they are above the long-run predicted level but more quickly when they are below this level. This asymmetric adjustment behaviour appears to increase in the post-2008 period.
    Date: 2012–01

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