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Volatile States: Institutions, Policy, and the Performance of American State Economies
     

Volatile States: Institutions, Policy, and the Performance of American State Economies

by William Mark Crain
 

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ISBN-10: 0472113038

ISBN-13: 9780472113033

Pub. Date: 01/17/2003

Publisher: University of Michigan Press

Why do American state economies grow at such vastly different rates and manifest such wide differences in living standards? Volatile States identifies the sources of rising living standards by examining the recent economic and fiscal history of the American states. With new insights about the factors that contribute to state economic success, the book departs from

Overview

Why do American state economies grow at such vastly different rates and manifest such wide differences in living standards? Volatile States identifies the sources of rising living standards by examining the recent economic and fiscal history of the American states. With new insights about the factors that contribute to state economic success, the book departs from traditional analyses of economic performance in its emphasis on the role of volatility.

Volatile States identifies institutions and policies that are key determinants of economic success and illustrates the considerable promise of a mean-variance criterion for assessing state economic performance. The mean-variance perspective amends applications of growth models that rely on the mobility of productive factors keyed to income levels alone. Simply measuring the level of growth in state economies reveals an incomplete and perhaps distorted picture of performance. Taking the volatility of state economies explicitly into account refines the whole notion of "economic success."

This book is essential reading for economists, political scientists, and policy-makers who routinely confront questions about the consequences of alternative institutional arrangements and economic policy choices.

W. Mark Crain is Professor of Economics and Research Associate, James M. Buchanan Center for Political Economy, George Mason University.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780472113033
Publisher:
University of Michigan Press
Publication date:
01/17/2003
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
184
Product dimensions:
6.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 0.80(d)

Table of Contents

Contents List of Illustrations....................xi
List of Tables....................xiii
Introduction: Economic and Fiscal Performance in a Mean-Variance Perspective....................1
1. Champions of the State Growth League....................5
2. The End of State Income Convergence....................25
3. Volatile States: Estimates of the Risk-Return Trade-Off....................31
4. Demise of the State Sales Tax....................50
5. Economic Consequences of State Tax Policy....................64
6. Reliability of Revenues from Alternative Tax Instruments....................73
7. State Budgets Outgrow State Incomes....................82
8. Fiscal Uncertainty: The Enemy of Efficient Budgeting....................96
9. Political Ideology and Other Drivers of State Budget Priorities....................119
10. Fresh Perspectives on Familiar Problems....................138
Notes....................143
References....................155
Index....................163

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