Using panel data for 189 economies from 2004 to 2016, we show that regulatory reform is associated with periods of fiscal imbalances. This association is significant in advanced economies and in post-communist countries. The presence of IMF programs in developing countries, a consequence of fiscal pressures, encourages regulatory reform. However, the effect of fiscal imbalances on reform weakens when governments can rely on low borrowing costs. Fiscal imbalances spur political change too, though the latter also has a significant independent effect on the proclivity for regulatory reform.
Financial Markets Group Discussion Papers DP 765