This thesis consists of six independent papers, which are summarized as follows.
"Stochastic Fiscal Policy and the Swedish Business Cycle" shows that fluctuations in distortive taxes can account for some of the key features of the Swedish post-war business cycle. The empirical fit of a simple stochastic growth model is found to significantly improve when it is amended to include imperfectly predictable fluctuations in payroll taxes, consumption taxes and government consumption.
"Swedish Income Taxes 1951-1990" reconstructs Swedish income tax schedules for the years 1951-1990. The main finding is that tax schedules can be very well approximated by an isoelastic function.
"The Relationship Between Money and Interest Rates: How Well Do Equilibrium Models Perform?" studies the extent to which dynamic monetary equilibrium models can account for the differences in the character of the money demand curve between Sweden and the United States. The main finding is that they can account for the main properties of the data remarkably well.
"The Welfare Costs of Stochastic Distortionary Taxation" presents estimates of the welfare costs of distortionary taxation (including inflation) calculated by using general equilbirium models calibrated for the United States and Sweden. The main finding is that the total welfare costs of the distortionary taxes are about five times higher in Sweden than in the United States.
"The Welfare Gains From Optimal Tax Reform" attempts to calculate how much the representative household in the United States would gain by a transition from current fiscal and monetary policy to a Ramsey optimal tax and inflation policy, which finances given government purchases and transfer payments in the most efficient way possible. I find that those gains correspond to an increment in consumption of about 3.8 percent.
"Using the Generalized Schur Form to Solve a System of Linear Expectational Difference Equations" presents a quick and convenient way of solving systems of linear expectational difference equations. It also presents very weak sufficient conditions for the existence of a unique solution.
Stockholm: Department of Economics, Stockholm University , 1997. , 182 p.