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In this study published in two parts (see Part I : ibid. Vol. 51. No. 7/8, 608-624.) the authors propose a clarification of the notion of soft budget constraint, which is widely used in analysis of socialist, transitional and market economies alike. The interpretation in the study is broad enough to embrace most existing approaches to soft budget constraint phenomena and provides a classification of the causes and consequences of these. In the light of this, the study goes on to review the theoretical literature on the subject and compare it with work on other dynamic commitment problems in economics.
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