NABE Survey Highlights Experts Views on Fiscal Matters

The National Association for Business Economics (NABE) published the findings of its August 2011 Economic Policy Survey yesterday, in which 250 panel members were asked various policy questions between July 19 and August 2 of this year. The findings were very interesting, particularly that most panelists supported a mixture of spending cuts and revenue increases to reduce deficits.

When asked whether fiscal policy in the near-term was too stimulative, too restrictive, or just about right, about 49 percent of participants supported more restrictive fiscal policy whereas about 37 percent supported a more stimulative approach. While a large majority of respondents (over 70 percent) predicted that fiscal policy would be more restrictive over the next two years, about half expressed support for more restrictive fiscal policy.

Most participants expressed support for deficit-reduction that included a combination of both higher taxes and spending cuts. More specifically, respondents cited containing health care costs as the most successful way to reduce deficits, followed by comprehensive tax reform. The chart below shows how much support other policies received.


While a majority of survey participants favored a combination of tax increases and reduced spending to reduce the deficit, more panelists supported spending cuts than tax increases. Of those who favored such a combination approach, 44 percent favored a package with more spending cuts, compared to 37 percent who favored a package split equally between the two (less than 6 percent supported more tax increases than spending cuts). However, about 75 percent felt that if comprehensive tax reform is pursued, increased revenues should be a result.

Click here to read more about the survey's findings.