An econometric test of Wagner's law for six countries based on cointegration and error-correction modelling techniques
The present study empirically examined five different versions of Wagner's law by employing annual time-series data on six countries over the period 1951-1996. Three countries are part of the emerging industrialized countries of Asia (South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand) and three are industrialized countries (Japan, USA, and the United Kingdom). The analysis is an advance over previous work in two ways: first, the stationarity propertities of the data and the order of integration of the data are empirically investigated using the Augmented Dickey-Fuller (ADF) and the Kwiatkowski et al. (Journal of Econometrics, 1, 1992) (KPSS), tests and second, the hypothesis of a long-run relationship between income and government spending is tested using bivariate cointegrated systems and employing the methodology of cointegration analysis as suggested by Johansen (Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, 12, 1988) and Johansen and Juselius (Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, 52, 1990). The results indicate that there exist a long-run relationship between income and government spending for sample countries studied with the exception of Thailand. Furthermore, it is found that the results concerning the validity of Wagner's Law are also held for selected countries studied with the exception of Thailand.