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The non-monotonic relationship between seigniorage and inequality

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  • Joydeep Bhattacharya
  • Helle Bunzel
  • Joseph Haslag

Abstract

We present an analysis of how political factors may come into play in the equilibrium determination of inflation. We employ a standard overlapping generations model with heterogenous young-age endowments, and a government that funds an exogenous spending via a combination of non-distortionary income taxes and the inflation tax. Agents have access to two stores of value: fiat money and an inflation-shielded, yet costly, asset. The model predicts that the relationship between elected reliance on the inflation tax (for revenue) and income inequality may be non-monotonic. We find robust empirical backing for this hypothesis from a cross-section of countries.

Suggested Citation

  • Joydeep Bhattacharya & Helle Bunzel & Joseph Haslag, 2005. "The non-monotonic relationship between seigniorage and inequality," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 38(2), pages 500-519, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:cje:issued:v:38:y:2005:i:2:p:500-519
    DOI: 10.1111/j.0008-4085.2005.00290.x
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    Cited by:

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    3. Scott J. Dressler, 2011. "A Long-Run, Short-Run and Politico-Economic Analysis of the Welfare Costs of Inflation," Villanova School of Business Department of Economics and Statistics Working Paper Series 16, Villanova School of Business Department of Economics and Statistics.
    4. David Aristei & Cristiano Perugini, 2014. "Speed and Sequencing of Transition Reforms and Income Inequality: A Panel Data Analysis," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 60(3), pages 542-570, September.
    5. Lahiri, Radhika & Ratnasiri, Shyama, 2010. "A political economy perspective on persistent inequality, inflation, and redistribution," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 27(5), pages 1199-1210, September.
    6. Binder, Carola, 2019. "Inequality and the inflation tax," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 61(C), pages 1-1.
    7. Lahiri, Radhika & Magnani, Elisabetta, 2012. "Endogenous skill heterogeneity and inflation," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 29(5), pages 1745-1756.

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E5 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit
    • P16 - Economic Systems - - Capitalist Systems - - - Political Economy of Capitalism

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