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A theory of countercyclical government multiplier

Michaillat, Pascal (2014) A theory of countercyclical government multiplier. American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, 6 (1). pp. 190-217. ISSN 1945-7707

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Identification Number: 10.1257/mac.6.1.190


I develop a New Keynesian model in which a type of government multiplier doubles when unemployment rises from 5 percent to 8 percent. This multiplier indicates the additional number of workers employed when one worker is hired in the public sector. Graphically, in equilibrium, an upward-sloping quasi-labor supply intersects a downward-sloping labor demand in a (employment, labor market tightness) plane. Increasing public employment stimulates labor demand, which increases tightness and therefore crowds out private employment. Critically, the quasi-labor supply is convex. Hence, when labor demand is depressed and unemployment is high, the increase in tightness and resulting crowding-out are small.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2014 AEA
Divisions: Economics
Centre for Economic Performance
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HB Economic Theory
H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
JEL classification: E - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics > E1 - General Aggregative Models > E12 - Keynes; Keynesian; Post-Keynesian
E - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics > E2 - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment > E24 - Macroeconomics: Employment; Unemployment; Wages; Intergenerational Income Distribution (includes wage indexation)
E - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics > E3 - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles > E32 - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
E - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics > E6 - Macroeconomic Policy Formation, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, Macroeconomic Policy, and General Outlook > E62 - Fiscal Policy; Public Expenditures, Investment, and Finance; Taxation
Date Deposited: 06 Aug 2013 15:42
Last Modified: 26 Jun 2024 02:06
Funders: Center for Equitable Growth at the University of California Berkeley

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