A General Equilibrium Analysis of Check Float
Households and businesses in the U.S. prefer to use check payment over less costly, electronic means of payment. Earlier studies have focused on check “float,” i.e., the time lag between receipt and clearing, as a potential explanation for the continued popularity of checks. An underlying assumption of these studies is that check float operates as a pure transfer from payee to payor. ; We construct a simple general equilibrium model in which payments are made by check. In general equilibrium, check float need not act as a transfer. If float can be priced into market transactions, then it has no effect on equilibrium allocations. If float is not priced into market transactions, then it acts as distorting tax. Consistent with earlier studies, we show that float can also lead to inefficiencies if banks engage in costly activities designed to accelerate check presentment. ; Our analysis is consistent with view that float is a significant factor behind the continued popularity of check payment. Our analysis also consistent with recent data that indicate that the average value of float (per check) is small.
(This abstract was borrowed from another version of this item.)
If 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.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
References listed on IDEAS
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.:
- Scott Freeman, 1993.
"Clearinghouse banks and banknote over-issue,"
9326, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.
- Lacker, Jeffrey M., 1997.
"Clearing, settlement and monetary policy,"
Journal of Monetary Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 40(2), pages 347-381, October.
- James N. Duprey & Clarence W. Nelson, 1986. "A visible hand: the Fed's involvement in the check payments system," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, issue Spr, pages 18-29.
- James B. Bullard & Steven Russell, 1998.
"How costly is sustained low inflation for the U.S. economy?,"
1997-012, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
- James B. Bullard & Steven Russell, 2004. "How costly is sustained low inflation for the U.S. economy?," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue May, pages 35-68.
- Charles M. Kahn & William Roberds, .
"Payment System Settlement and Bank Incentives,"
Center for Financial Institutions Working Papers
97-32, Wharton School Center for Financial Institutions, University of Pennsylvania.
- Mulligan, Casey B & Sala-I-Martin, Xavier X, 1997.
"The Optimum Quantity of Money: Theory and Evidence,"
Journal of Money, Credit and Banking,
Blackwell Publishing, vol. 29(4), pages 687-715, November.
- Casey B. Mulligan & Xavier X. Sala-i-Martin & Frederic S. Mishkin & Jonas D. M. Fisher, 1997. "The optimum quantity of money: theory and evidence," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, pages 687-724.
- Casey B. Mulligan & Xavier Sala-i-Martin, 1997. "The optimum quantity of money: Theory and evidence," Economics Working Papers 229, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
- Casey B. Mulligan & Xavier X. Sala-i-Martin, 1997. "The Optimum Quantity of Money: Theory and Evidence," NBER Working Papers 5954, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Freeman, Scott, 1996. "The Payments System, Liquidity, and Rediscounting," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(5), pages 1126-38, December.
- William R. Emmons, 1995. "Interbank netting agreement and the distribution of bank default risk," Working Papers 1995-016, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
- Edward J. Green, 1999.
"Money and debt in the structure of payments,"
Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, issue Spr, pages 13-29.
- Jeffrey M. Lacker, 1997. "The check float puzzle," Economic Quarterly, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, issue Sum, pages 1-26.
- Kirstin E. Wells, 1996. "Are checks overused?," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, issue Fall, pages 2-12.
- Lucas, Robert E, Jr, 1980. "Equilibrium in a Pure Currency Economy," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 18(2), pages 203-20, April.
- N/A, 1996. "Note:," Foreign Trade Review, , vol. 31(1-2), pages 1-1, January.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:jfinin:v:8:y:1999:i:4:p:353-377. See general 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 you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.