Paper by Joseph Wright, Department of Political Science, The Pennsylvania State University. The paper discusses issues around manipulation of the economy by authoritarian leaders around election time. Evidence from case studies suggests the presence electoral budget cycles in hegemonic dictatorships. However, it is not know if electoral budget cycles exist in other dictatorships. After providing global evidence for an electoral spending cycle, the paper explores one explanation for electoral fiscal manipulation in dictatorships. To deter investment in the opposition, dictators have an incentive toincrease spending in election years. Click here to access the full paper.