L'austérité n'est pas incompatible avec la croissance, mais seulement si elle est conduite par une réduction des dépenses publiques et non par une augmentation des prélèvements obligatoires :
"The accumulated evidence from over 40 years of fiscal adjustments across the OECD speaks loud and clear:
- First, adjustments achieved through spending cuts are less recessionary than those achieved through tax increases.
- Second, spending-based consolidations accompanied by the right polices tend to be less recessionary or even have a positive impact on growth.
- Third, only spending-based adjustments have eventually led to a permanent consolidation of the budget, as measured by the stabilisation – if not the reduction – of debt-to-GDP ratios."
(...) "Tax-based stabilisations not only eventually fail, in the sense that they are unable to stop the growth of the debt-to-GDP ratio. When these fiscal packages are announced entrepreneurs’ confidence falls sharply, and this is reflected in a fall in output. On the other hand, spending-based stabilisations (especially if accompanied by appropriate contemporaneous polices) do not negatively affect economic confidence contemporaneously. Moreover they are often accompanied by an increase in output within a year."
Source : http://www.voxeu.org/index.php?q=node/7836
"The recession of the early 1980s was equally severe in countries that cut public spending and those that did not (...) This suggests that the "German view" of negative fiscal multipliers cannot be easily dismissed-at least for the countries where spending cuts were sharpest (...) This evidence consistently points to the experiences of Denmark and Ireland as the two most striking cases of "expansionary stabilizations" in Europe. (...) Why does the experience of Denmark so sharply contradict the Keynesian prediction about the effects of a fiscal contradiction? (...) [This] offers an opportunity to identify the conditions under which severe fiscal contractions can be expansionary."
Source : http://www.nber.org/chapters/c10973.pdf