EconPol Working Paper Series

Cover of EconPol Working Paper 51

Structural Tax Reforms and Public Spending Efficiency

António Afonso (EconPol Europe; ISEG; REM/UECE), João Tovar Jalles (EconPol Europe; ISEG; REM/UECE; Economics for Policy and Centre for Globalization and Governance; IPAG Business School), Ana Venâncio (ISEG; ADVANCE/CSG)

This working paper, from António Afonso, João Tovar Jalles and Ana Venâncio, evaluates the effects of structural tax reforms on government spending efficiency in a sample of OECD economies over the period 2007-2016. Increases in tax rates result in falling public efficiency, with the negative effect found to be more significant for increases in personal income tax and value added tax. In times of economic expansion, increasing the corporate income tax base and reducing personal income tax rates were found to have a positive impact on public sector efficiency. In recessions, efficiency improves when the personal income tax and value added tax bases increase and the corporate income tax rate increases. 

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Cover of EconPol Working Paper 50

Government Spending Efficiency, Measurement and Applications: a Cross-Country Efficiency Dataset

António Afonso (EconPol Europe; ISEG; REM/UECE), João Tovar Jalles (EconPol Europe; ISEG; REM/UECE; Economics for Policy and Centre for Globalization and Governance; IPAG Business School), Ana Venâncio (ISEG; ADVANCE/CSG)

António Afonso, João Tovar Jalles, Ana Venâncio have conducted a review of the literature dealing with overall public sector performance and efficiency, defining a methodology to assess public sector efficiency and create a novel and large cross-sectional panel dataset of government indicators and public sector efficiency scores. The focus is on a balanced sample covering all 36 OECD countries over the time period between 2006 and 2017. The authors have defined a set of economic and sociodemographic metrics necessary to construct performance composite indicators and calculated and reported a full set of (input and output oriented) efficiency scores based on the performance indicators previously computed.

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Cover of EconPol Working Paper 49

Environmental Policy with Green Consumerism

Stefan Ambec and Philippe De Donder

Is green consumerism beneficial to the environment and the economy? To shed light on this question, Stefan Ambec and Philippe De Donder study the political economy of environmental regulations in a model with neutral and green consumers where the latter derive some warm glow from buying a good of higher environmental quality produced by a profit-maximizing monopoly, while the good bought by neutral consumers is provided by a competitive fringe.

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Cover of EconPol Working Paper 48

Equilibrium Bitcoin Pricing

Bruno Biais ( HEC Paris), Christophe Bisière, Matthieu Bouvard, Catherine Casamatta, Albert J. Menkveld (EconPol Europe, Toulouse School of Economics, Universite Toulouse Capitole [TSM-Research])

In this working paper from Bruno Biais (HEC Paris), Christophe Bisière, Matthieu Bouvard, Catherine Casamatta and Albert J. Menkveld (EconPol Europe, Toulouse School of Economics, Universite Toulouse Capitole [TSM-Research]), the authors offer an equilibrium model of cryptocurrency pricing and confront it to new data on bitcoin transactional benefits and costs. The model emphasises that the fundamental value of the cryptocurrency is the stream of net transactional benefits it will provide, which depend on its future prices. The link between future and present prices implies that returns can exhibit large volatility, unrelated to fundamentals. They construct an index measuring the ease with which bitcoins can be used to purchase goods and services and measure costs incurred by bitcoin owners. Consistent with the model, estimated transactional net benefits explain a statistically signicant fraction of bitcoin returns.

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Cover of EconPol Working Paper 47

European Structural and Investment Funds and Regional Convergence: The Impact of Public Deficit in Beta-Convergence

Carlos San Juan Mesonada and Carlos Sunyer Manteiga (EconPol Europe, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid)

Using realized investment data, this working paper from Carlos San Juan Mesonada and Carlos Sunyer Manteiga (EconPol Europe, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid) empirically assesses the effects of the European Structural and Investment Funds on the regional convergence of income in Spanish regions, comparing the results in terms of real regional convergence. The level of indebtedness in the region has a definite adverse effect on the effectiveness of European projects, and the authors also identify an apparent spillover effect from the funds towards other border regions.

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