Using inflation to erode the US public debt
AbstractProjections indicate the US Federal debt held by the public may exceed 70–100% of GDP within 10years. In many respects, the temptation to inflate away some of this debt burden is similar to that at the end of World War II. In 1946, the debt ratio was 108.6%. Inflation reduced this ratio by more than a third within a decade. Yet there are some important differences – shorter debt maturities today reduce the temptation to inflate, while the larger share of debt held by foreigners increases it. This paper lays out an analytical framework for determining the impact of a large nominal debt overhang on the temptation to inflate. It suggests that when economic growth is stalled, the US debt overhang may induce an increase in inflation of about 5% for several years that could significantly reduce the debt ratio.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Macroeconomics.
Volume (Year): 33 (2011)
Issue (Month): 4 ()
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/622617
Inflation; Public debt; Debt overhang; Debt maturity;
Other versions of this item:
- Aizenman, Joshua & Marion, Nancy, 2009. "Using Inflation to Erode the U.S. Public Debt," Santa Cruz Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt6xf174rs, Department of Economics, UC Santa Cruz.
- Joshua Aizenman & Nancy Marion, 2009. "Using Inflation to Erode the U.S. Public Debt," NBER Working Papers 15562, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- E6 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook
- F4 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance
- H6 - Public Economics - - National Budget, Deficit, and Debt
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Alessandro Missale & Olivier Jean Blanchard, 1991.
"The Debt Burden and Debt Maturity,"
NBER Working Papers
3944, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Barro, Robert J., 1979.
"On the Determination of the Public Debt,"
3451400, Harvard University Department of Economics.
- Persson, Mats & Persson, Torsten & Svensson, Lars E O, 1996.
"Debt, Cash Flow and Inflation Incentives: A Swedish Example,"
CEPR Discussion Papers
1488, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Persson, M & Persson, T & Svensson, L-E-O, 1996. "Debt, Cash Flow and Inflation Incentives : A Swedish Example," Papers 613, Stockholm - International Economic Studies.
- Mats Persson & Torsten Persson & Lars E. O. Svensson, 1996. "Debt, Cash Flow and Inflation Incentives: A Swedish Example," NBER Working Papers 5772, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Persson, Mats & Persson, Torsten & Svensson, Lars E.O., 1997. "Debt, cash flow and inflation incentives: A Swedish example," Seminar Papers 613, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
- George J. Hall & Thomas J. Sargent, 2011.
"Interest Rate Risk and Other Determinants of Post-WWII US Government Debt/GDP Dynamics,"
American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics,
American Economic Association, vol. 3(3), pages 192-214, July.
- George J. Hall & Thomas J. Sargent, 2010. "Interest rate risk and other determinants of post WWII U.S. government debt/GDP dynamics," Working Papers 01, Brandeis University, Department of Economics and International Businesss School.
- George J. Hall & Thomas J. Sargent, 2010. "Interest Rate Risk and Other Determinants of Post-WWII U.S. Government Debt/GDP Dynamics," NBER Working Papers 15702, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Thomas J. Sargent & George J. Hall, 2010. "Interest rate risk and other determinants of post WWII U.S. government debt/GDP dynamics," 2010 Meeting Papers 208, Society for Economic Dynamics.
- Bruno, Michael & Easterly, William, 1995.
"Inflation crises and long-run growth,"
Policy Research Working Paper Series
1517, The World Bank.
- Martin Feldstein, 1999.
"Tax Avoidance And The Deadweight Loss Of The Income Tax,"
The Review of Economics and Statistics,
MIT Press, vol. 81(4), pages 674-680, November.
- Martin Feldstein, 1995. "Tax Avoidance and the Deadweight Loss of the Income Tax," NBER Working Papers 5055, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Matthias Doepke & Martin Schneider, 2006. "Inflation and the Redistribution of Nominal Wealth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 114(6), pages 1069-1097, December.
- Carmen M. & M. Belen Sbrancia, 2011.
"The Liquidation of Government Debt,"
Working Paper Series
WP11-10, Peterson Institute for International Economics.
- Calvo, Guillermo A & Guidotti, Pablo E, 1992. "Optimal Maturity of Nominal Government Debt: An Infinite-Horizon Model," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 33(4), pages 895-919, November.
- Calomiris, Charles W., 1988. "Institutional Failure, Monetary Scarcity, and the Depreciation of the Continental," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 48(01), pages 47-68, March.
- Guillermo A. Calvo, 1989. "Is Inflation Effective for Liquidating Short-Term Nominal Debt?," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 36(4), pages 950-960, December.
- Matthias Doepke, .
"Inflation as a Redistribution Shock: Effects on Aggregates and Welfare,"
UCLA Economics Online Papers
412, UCLA Department of Economics.
- Doepke, Matthias & Schneider, Martin, 2006. "Inflation as a Redistribution Shock: Effects on Aggregates and Welfare," CEPR Discussion Papers 5939, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Matthias Doepke & Martin Schneider, 2006. "Inflation as a Redistribution Shock: Effects on Aggregates and Welfare," NBER Working Papers 12319, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Browning, Edgar K, 1987. "On the Marginal Welfare Cost of Taxation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(1), pages 11-23, March.
- Menzie Chinn & Jeffrey Frankel, 2008.
"Why the Euro Will Rival the Dollar,"
Savez ekonomista Vojvodine, Novi Sad, Serbia, vol. 55(3), pages 255-278, September.
- Kenneth D. Garbade, 2007. "The emergence of "regular and predictable" as a Treasury debt management strategy," Economic Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, issue Mar, pages 53-71.
- Benjamin M. Friedman, 1983. "Recent Perspectives in and on Macroeconomics," NBER Working Papers 1208, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
Blog mentionsAs found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
- Alimenter lâinflation pour rÃ©duire la dette publique ?
by ? in D'un champ l'autre on 2014-06-14 17:29:00
- GrÃ¨ce: la sortie de l'euro est proche...
by firstname.lastname@example.org (Le Captain') in Captain Economics on 2012-05-08 11:13:42
This item has more than 25 citations. To prevent cluttering this page, these citations are listed on a separate page. reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.Access and download statisticsgeneral information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Zhang, Lei).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.