This study investigates the role of fiscal advisors in maintaining government fiscal discipline when the advisor's appointment is determined endogenously. Our theoretical model shows that an incumbent politician has an incentive to employ an external advisor as a commitment device for fiscal discipline before being aware of his own competence level. The advisor acts as a restraint on public expenditure, which works to control the incumbent politician's ex post overspending to buy votes. Our empirical analysis supports this hypothesis in the Japanese case where governments with directors from the central government tend to spend less.
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