The design of fiscal consolidation measures in the European Union: distributional effects and implications for macroeconomic recovery

Publication type:

EUROMOD Working Paper Series

Series Number:



Francesco Figari, Alari Paulus and Holly Sutherland

Publication date

27 Mar 2015


The financial and economic crisis which started in the late 2000s and the fiscal consolidation measures to counter the subsequent government budget deficits have an impact on household income distribution and macroeconomic recovery. We consider the austerity measures in relation to their distributional impact and the potential channels through which fiscal consolidation can affect economic growth. We find notable variation in the size, composition and effects of fiscal consolidation. Richer households tend to bear a greater burden in most countries but spending cuts are more likely to affect liquidity constrained households casting doubts over previous findings in the macro-economic literature about the effectiveness of such measures. This suggests the need to consider more disaggregated evidence to reach robust policy conclusions.


Income Dynamics, Household Economics, Microsimulation and Economic Policy

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