There are important lessons to be learned and analytical frameworks to be adapted and reused from the body of reference provided by the past history of public finance. This makes it possible to approach themes in terms of the actions of policy makers in various operating sectors of the economy: money, foreign exchange, finance, industry, labour relations, international trade, taxation and so on. One other key function carried out by the central authorities is the enactment and enforcement of rules governing competition between economic agents. Furthermore, in many countries, goods and services are produced by public sector enterprises, which emphasises that public intervention comes in many shapes and forms. In this book, attention centres on the fiscal sector, where government intervention has a crucial impact on private saving and investment, public spending decisions, taxation and government revenues, including the funding of budget deficits.