Public sector

From this page you can access thematically grouped Analytical Articles published in the Economic Bulletin from 1999, ordered by date of dissemination within each year.

All documents are available in PDF format PDF File. Opens in a new window

  • 16/11/2017
    An assessment of the effectiveness of rebates for keeping the over-60s in employment (472 KB) Mario Izquierdo Peinado and Sergio Puente Díaz

    Traditionally, employment policies in Spain have rested to a greater extent than in other countries on the application of rebates to the Social Security contributions of specific groups.
    The international empirical evidence on the effectiveness of this type of programme tends to
    show that, in general, these programmes involve a high budgetary cost, with limited although
    positive effects on the groups concerned, without affecting the aggregate level of employment. With the aim of providing additional evidence on this matter, this article summarises the results of an exercise assessing a specific Social Security contribution rebates programme in force from 2006 to 2012 for the group of workers over 60. Specifically, using data from the Spanish MCVL (Social Security administrative labour records), the effect that the elimination of this rebates programme had on the probability of these workers losing their job is estimated. The results show that the elimination of the incentives gave rise to a positive and significant although limited impact on the probability of this group losing their job, which was concentrated among the low-skilled, with relatively few years of service in the firm and with lower severance costs. Overall, the evidence would indicate that the programme produced scant benefits in terms of a higher rate of employment retention for the group of workers concerned. These findings are confined to this specific programme and, therefore, they are not extensible to the range of employment rebates for different groups that have been in force in the past in Spain or are so are present, although they highlight the need for a detailed assessment of active employment policies providing for an analysis of their effectiveness.

  • 14/09/2017
    The impact of unconventional monetary policy on euro area public finances (700 KB) Pablo Burriel, Francisco Martí and Javier J. Pérez

    Unconventional monetary policy measures implemented by the European Central Bank in recent years have helped to reduce interest rates on sovereign debt in the euro area as a whole. In addition to the direct impact on debt servicing payments, monetary policy conduct in the most recent period has had positive macroeconomic effects which have indirectly impacted the cyclical revenue and expenditure items in the government budget. This article approximately quantifies both direct and indirect effects for the main countries in the euro area.

  • 25/05/2017
    Federal unemployment insurance in the United States (592 KB) Silvia Albrizio, Juan Carlos Berganza and Iván Kataryniuk

    Unemployment insurance in the United States is one of the fiscal risk-sharing mechanisms designed to mitigate the negative consequences of economic shocks. The system is based on complementary federal and state benefits, which behave very differently during normal and crisis periods. Thus, unemployment insurance is principally a state competence during normal periods, while the federal government assumes an active role in crisis periods, smoothing the negative impact of economic crises on household consumption and mitigating the heterogeneous effects across states.
    This is an element that distinguishes the United States from the European Monetary Union, which lacks automatic fiscal stabilising tools for the area as a whole; consequently the costs arising from shocks have to be assumed by each country individually, which makes it difficult for the area to function homogeneously.

  • 06/04/2017
    The cost of interventions in the financial sector since 2008 in the EU countries (526 KB) Antonio Millaruelo and Ana del Río

    Since the start of the financial crisis, the advanced countries have deployed numerous measures in support of the financial system, requiring a sizeable volume of public funds. In the EU, aid has been authorised and subject to the conditionality required by the European Commission, in respect of its accountability for competition-related matters.
    This article explains the broad criteria for recording aid in general government accounts and discusses the different ways of measuring its direct cost. On Eurostat figures for the 2008-2015 period, the impact of interventions on general government accounts in terms of debt, debt net of assets, deficits and contingent liabilities are shown for the EU countries.
    Nevertheless, the final cost will not be fully identified until the restructuring processes outstanding have been concluded and the public sector’s remaining exposure to the banking sector has been removed.

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