Chart of the day: Austerity round the world

New Statesman

This chart (via Brad Plumer) shows the predicted primary balance changes in ten OECD countries from 2011 to 2013. It also breaks the changes into those stemming from spending cuts, and those stemming from tax rises. Not only can we see the magnitude of expected fiscal consolidation, but we can split it between the revenue and spending side, and thus see that, for example, almost all of Italy's consilidation comes from the former, but almost all of our consolidation comes from the latter.

A few notes on the data: It only covers a narrow date range, so fails to capture, for example, the vast amount of austerity already enacted in Greece. Primary balance is difference from structural deficit, since it ignores interest payments on debt. And, as Plumer writes:

These forecasts could prove wrong. The OECD, for instance, seems to project that the United States will improve its primary balance through a balanced mix of spending cuts and tax increases in the next year — appearing to assume that Congress will let all of the various tax cuts expire at the end of 2012, which is far from certain.