Evolutionary Stability in Fiscal Competition

26 Pages Posted: 8 Apr 2016

See all articles by Andreas Wagener

Andreas Wagener

Leibniz Universit├Ąt Hannover - Economics and Business Administration Area; CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute for Economic Research); Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration

Date Written: March 3, 2016

Abstract

In fiscal interaction, a policy is evolutionarily stable if, once adopted by all governments, jurisdictions that deviate from it fare worse than those that stick to it. Evolutionary stability is the appropriate solution concept for models of imitative learning (policy mimicking). We show that evolutionarily stable strategies implement identical allocations, regardless of whether jurisdictions use tax rates or expenditure levels as their strategy variable. This is in contrast to the observation that the allocations in the Nash equilibria of games played in tax rates or expenditure levels differ from one another. With evolutionary play, jurisdictions set taxes and expenditures competitively, i.e., they behave as if they were all negligibly small.

Keywords: tax and expenditure competition, finite-player ESS, policy equivalence

JEL Classification: H770, H720, C730

Suggested Citation

Wagener, Andreas, Evolutionary Stability in Fiscal Competition (March 3, 2016). CESifo Working Paper Series No. 5791, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2760258

Andreas Wagener (Contact Author)

Leibniz Universit├Ąt Hannover - Economics and Business Administration Area ( email )

Koenigsworther Platz 1
30167 Hannover
Germany

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute for Economic Research)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.CESifo.de

Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration ( email )

Welthandelsplatz 1
Vienna, Wien 1020
Austria

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