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Fiscal policy is taking centre stage. Among advanced countries, the news is bad; Europe’s periphery teeters, the UK slashes, the US deadlocks, Japan muddles. But in the rest of the world there is good news. In an historic reversal, many emerging market and developing countries have over the last decade achieved a countercyclical fiscal policy. In the past, developing countries tended to follow procyclical fiscal policy. They increased spending (or cut taxes) during periods of expansion and cut spending (or raised taxes) during periods of recession. Many authors have documented that fiscal policy has tended to be procyclical in developing countries, in comparison with a pattern among industrialised countries that has been by and large countercyclical.


Frankel, Jeffrey A., Carlos A. Vegh, and Guillermo Vuletin. "Fiscal Policy in Developing Countries: Escape from Procyclicality." VoxEU, June 23, 2011.