The Euro Area 12: a comparative assessment of its member states in the period 1998–2022

Bruna Santos, Leonardo Costa*, Francisca Guedes de Oliveira

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review



The primary objectives of this research are to compare the economic performance of the Member States (MS) in the Euro Area 12 (EA-12) of the European Union (EU) that served as net contributors and net recipients of its budget during the period 1998–2022. The comparison focuses on aspects related to economic growth and the business cycle, exploring the presence of hysteresis. To achieve these objectives, a novel approach is employed, which integrates the analysis of both growth and cycles. This approach involves using the Seemingly Unrelated Regression Equations (SURE) model to estimate a translog production frontier and assess the impact of lagging output gaps on the potential output or capacity for each of the MS considered. The data used to estimate each frontier and analyze growth decomposition consist of quarterly data filtered using the Kalman filter. The results reveal that lagging output gaps, occurring one or two quarters prior, significantly affect the potential output or capacity of the EA-12 MS, thereby supporting the existence of hysteresis. However, the impacts appear to be minimal. Furthermore, the research concludes that changes in total factor productivity (TFP), mainly due to technical change, play a more crucial role in the growth of MS that are net contributors to the EU budget. Conversely, total factor accumulation (TFA), mainly physical capital accumulation, has a more pronounced impact on the growth of MS net recipients from the EU budget. Interestingly, the heterogeneity observed among the EA-12 MS extends beyond the simple division between net contributors and net recipients of the EU budget. This heterogeneity raises questions about the European Central Bank’s (ECB) ability to stabilize the economies of these various MS solely through conventional monetary policy.
Original languageEnglish
Article number84
Pages (from-to)1-22
Number of pages22
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 9 Apr 2024


  • Euro Area 12
  • Kalman filter
  • Translog production frontiers
  • Hysteresis
  • SURE


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