On the needed quantity of government debt
People are enjoying longer retirement periods, and population growth is slowing and, in some countries, falling. In this article, we determine the implications of these demographic changes for the needed amount of government debt. If tax rates and the transfer share of gross national income (GNI) are both high, the needed debt is near zero. With such a system, however, huge deadweight losses are incurred as a result of the high tax rate on labor income. With a savings system, a large government debt to annual GNI ratio is needed. In a country with early retirement and no population growth, the needed government debt is as large as five times GNI, and welfare is as much as 24 percent higher in terms of lifetime consumption equivalents in the savings system relative to the tax-and-transfer system.
Volume (Year): (2007)
Issue (Month): Nov ()
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: 90 Hennepin Avenue, P.O. Box 291, Minneapolis, MN 55480-0291|
Phone: (612) 204-5000
Web page: http://minneapolisfed.org/
More information through EDIRC
|Order Information:|| Web: http://www.minneapolisfed.org/pubs/ Email: |
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.:
- Ellen R. McGrattan & Edward C. Prescott, 2003.
"Average Debt and Equity Returns: Puzzling?,"
Levine's Working Paper Archive
506439000000000367, David K. Levine.
- Chamley, Christophe, 1986. "Optimal Taxation of Capital Income in General Equilibrium with Infinite Lives," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 54(3), pages 607-22, May.
- S. Rao Aiyagari & Ellen R. McGrattan, 1994.
"The optimal quantity of debt,"
538, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
- Ellen R. McGrattan & Edward C. Prescott, 2000.
"Is the stock market overvalued?,"
Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, issue Fall, pages 20-40.
- Andrew B. Abel & N. Gregory Mankiw & Lawrence H. Summers & Richard J. Zeckhauser, 1989.
"Assessing Dynamic Efficiency: Theory and Evidence,"
Review of Economic Studies,
Oxford University Press, vol. 56(1), pages 1-19.
- Andrew Abel & Gregory N. Mankiw & Lawrence H. Summers & Richard Zeckhauser, . "Assessing Dynamic Efficiency: Theory and Evidence," Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research Working Papers 14-88, Wharton School Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research.
- Andrew B. Abel & N. Gregory Mankiw & Lawrence H. Summers & Richard J. Zeckhauser, 1986. "Assessing Dynamic Efficiency: Theory and Evidence," NBER Working Papers 2097, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Edward C. Prescott, 2006. "Nobel Lecture: The Transformation of Macroeconomic Policy and Research," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 114(2), pages 203-235, April.
- Robert W. Fogel, 2005. "Changes in the Physiology of Aging during the Twentieth Century," NBER Working Papers 11233, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Gary Hansen, 2010.
"Indivisible Labor and the Business Cycle,"
Levine's Working Paper Archive
233, David K. Levine.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:fip:fedmqr:y:2007:i:nov:p:2-15:n:v.31no.1. 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: (Janelle Ruswick)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.