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French Politics

, Volume 17, Issue 3, pp 307–339 | Cite as

The political budget cycle in French municipal elections: unexpected nonlinear effects

  • Mamadou BoukariEmail author
Original Article
  • 39 Downloads

Abstract

Using a large dataset of French municipalities, this article examines the joint determination of the win margin of victory of incumbent mayors and the size of the political budget cycle. A system of two simultaneous equations is estimated with the three-stage least squares method. The main findings are twofold. First, the effects of the win margin on the size of the fiscal cycle are U-shaped. This means that, in a close election, the incumbent mayor tends to reduce public expenditure while, if the incumbent is either certain to win or to lose the election, expenditures tend to be increased. Second, another nonlinear effect is revealed, linking mayors’ time in office to their win margin of victory.

Keywords

Vote function Opportunism Political budget cycles System estimation Municipalities France 

JEL classification

D72 E32 H72 

Notes

Acknowledgements

I wish to thank the Editor and two anonymous referees. I am also grateful to Aurelie Cassette, Etienne Farvaque, Jean-Sébastien Pentecôte, Olivier Beaumais, Arnaud Rioual, Jean Baptiste Desquilbet, Stéphane Vigeant, Abdoulaye Papa Diop and Francisco José Veiga for useful comments on previous versions of this article. The usual disclaimer applies.

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Limited 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculté des Sciences Economiques et de Gestion (FaSEG)Université de KaraKaraTogo
  2. 2.LEM (CNRS-UMR 9221) - Université de LilleVilleneuve d’AscqFrance

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