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Inflation, Prices, and Information in Competitive Search

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  • Belen Jerez
  • Miquel Faig

Abstract

Inflation, as a tax on money, induces buyers to reduce their money balances. Sellers are aware of this, so to attract costumers, they post price offers that reduce the need for buyers to carry precautionary money balances. We study this effect of inflation in a competitive search environment where buyers experience preference shocks after they are matched with a seller. With full information, equilibrium price offers consist of a flat fee which is independent of the quantities purchased. With private information of buyers' preferences, equilibrium price offers are restricted by incentive compatibility constraints. As a result, the price schedule that maps quantities purchased onto payments must be increasing. As inflation rises, these price schedules become relatively flat, so the marginal cost of purchasing goods is low. Consequently, buyers that are not liquidity constrained (with a low desire to consume) purchase inefficiently large quantities. Meanwhile, buyers with a high desire to consume typically purchase inefficiently low quantities because, as their money balances fall, they become liquidity constrained. This is in contrast with the full information benchmark where inflation reduces the quantities purchased by all buyers.

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Paper provided by Society for Economic Dynamics in its series 2005 Meeting Papers with number 462.

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Date of creation: 2005
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Handle: RePEc:red:sed005:462

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Keywords: inflation; prices; private information; competitive search;

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Cited by:
  1. Stephen Williamson & Randall Wright, 2010. "New monetarist economics: methods," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue May, pages 265-302.
  2. Enchuan Shao, 2013. "The Threat of Counterfeiting in Competitive Search Equilibrium," Working Papers 13-22, Bank of Canada.
  3. Mei Dong & Janet Hua Jiang, 2011. "Money and Price Posting under Private Information," Working Papers 11-22, Bank of Canada.
  4. Fusaro, Marc Anthony, 2010. "Are "bounced check loans" really loans? Theory, evidence and policy," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 50(4), pages 492-500, November.
  5. Lars Boerner & Albrecht Ritschl, 2006. "Making Financial Markets: Contract Enforcement and the Emergence of Tradable Assets in Late Medieval Europe," 2006 Meeting Papers 884, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  6. Williamson, Stephen & Wright, Randall, 2010. "New Monetarist Economics: Models," Handbook of Monetary Economics, in: Benjamin M. Friedman & Michael Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Monetary Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 2, pages 25-96 Elsevier.
  7. Rocheteau, Guillaume, 2012. "The cost of inflation: A mechanism design approach," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 147(3), pages 1261-1279.
  8. Huberto M. Ennis, 2005. "Search, Money, and Inflation under Private Information," 2005 Meeting Papers 135, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  9. Lester, Benjamin & Rocheteau, Guillaume & Weill, Pierre-Olivier, 2014. "Competing for order flow in OTC markets," Working Papers 14-9, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
  10. Adrian Masters, 2010. "Money in a Model of Prior Production and Imperfectly Directed Search," Discussion Papers 10-11, University at Albany, SUNY, Department of Economics.
  11. Galenianos, Manolis & Kircher, Philipp, 2008. "A model of money with multilateral matching," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(6), pages 1054-1066, September.
  12. Manolis Galenianos & Philipp Kircher, 2012. "On the game-theoretic foundations of competitive search equilibrium," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 29707, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  13. Boerner, Lars & Ritschl, Albrecht, 2011. "Communal Responsibility and the Coexistence of Money and Credit Under Anonymous Matching," CEPR Discussion Papers 8184, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.

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