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Political budget cycles with informed voters:evidence from Italy
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Economics.
2016 (English)Report (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

I exploit a reform that required Italian municipalities to disclose their balance sheetsbefore elections to study whether having more informed voters aects the political budgetcycle. To start, investment spending in the year before elections is 28.5% higher thanin the election year and this increase is mainly nanced with new debt and sales of publicassets. Taking advantage of the staggered timing of municipal elections, I estimate thatthe reform reduced this pre-electoral spending increase by around one-third. I also studythe role of local newspapers in disseminating municipal nancial information to votersand I nd that the reduction in spending after the reform is twice as strong in provinceswith above-median local newspapers sales per capita. I interpret these results as evidencethat mayors react to more informed voters by reducing spending manipulation.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala, 2016. , 50 p.
Working paper / Department of Economics, Uppsala University (Online), ISSN 1653-6975 ; 2016:6
Keyword [en]
Information, Political budget cycles, accountability, Italian municipalities
National Category
Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-294526OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-294526DiVA: diva2:930346
Available from: 2016-05-23 Created: 2016-05-23 Last updated: 2016-05-25Bibliographically approved

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Repetto, Luca
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