IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

Monetary and Fiscal Policy to Escape from a Deflationary Trap

  • Iwamoto, Yasushi

    (Hitotsubashi U)

This paper provides a theoretical overview of monetary and fiscal policy with the potential to engineer an exit from a deflationary trap, which we define here as sustained deflation in the presence of zero interest rates. We find that the required policy steps are an interest rate hike, a commitment to future currency growth, and a money-financed tax cut. The amount of tax cut required is equal to the increase in the central bank's payments to the treasury resulting from the higher inflation rate (nominal interest rate), while fiscal policymakers must maintain fiscal discipline by stabilizing government debt and the primary balance. There will be a temporary fall in output when prices are sticky, but this is the price that must be paid to conquer deflation. The current commitment to quantitative easing is based on the assumption that the natural interest rate has temporarily declined. If the economy is in a deflationary trap, however, the continuation of zero interest rates reinforces deflationary expectations and may make it perpetually impossible to eliminate deflation. Even under conditions in which the natural rate of interest seems to be positive, if deflation persists, it is probably wise to consider a policy approach that assumes deflationary trap conditions. With this in mind, we believe the conditions required for abandoning the current policy regime should include, in addition to consistently positive growth in the consumer price index (CPI), a consideration of the trend in real GDP.

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.

File URL:
Download Restriction: no

Article provided by Institute for Monetary and Economic Studies, Bank of Japan in its journal Monetary and Economic Studies.

Volume (Year): 23 (2005)
Issue (Month): 1 (February)
Pages: 1-46

in new window

Handle: RePEc:ime:imemes:v:23:y:2005:i:1:p:1-46
Contact details of provider: Postal: 2-1-1 Nihonbashi, Hongoku-cho, Chuo-ku, Tokyo 103
Phone: +81-3-3279-111
Fax: +81-3-3510-1265
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

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.:

as in new window
  1. Michael Woodford, 1995. "Price Level Determinacy Without Control of a Monetary Aggregate," NBER Working Papers 5204, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Fujiki, Hiroshi & Shiratsuka, Shigenori, 2002. "Policy Duration Effect under the Zero Interest Rate Policy in 1999-2000: Evidence from Japan's Money Market Data," Monetary and Economic Studies, Institute for Monetary and Economic Studies, Bank of Japan, vol. 20(1), pages 1-31, January.
  3. N. Gregory Mankiw & Ricardo Reis, 2002. "Sticky Information Versus Sticky Prices: A Proposal To Replace The New Keynesian Phillips Curve," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 117(4), pages 1295-1328, November.
  4. Chris Edmond, 2002. "Self-Insurance, Social Insurance, and the Optimum Quantity of Money," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(2), pages 141-147, May.
  5. Calvo, Guillermo A., 1983. "Staggered prices in a utility-maximizing framework," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 383-398, September.
  6. Taylor, John B., 1993. "Discretion versus policy rules in practice," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 195-214, December.
  7. Bullard, James & Cho, In-Koo, 2005. "Escapist policy rules," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 29(11), pages 1841-1865, November.
  8. David Reifschneider & John C. Williams, 2000. "Three lessons for monetary policy in a low-inflation era," Conference Series ; [Proceedings], Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, pages 936-978.
  9. Robert J. Gordon, 1970. "The Recent Acceleration of Inflation and Its Lessons for the Future," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 1(1), pages 8-47.
  10. Lars E.O. Svensson, 2003. "Escaping from a Liquidity Trap and Deflation: The Foolproof Way and Others," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 17(4), pages 145-166, Fall.
  11. Maurice Obstfeld & Kenneth Rogoff, 1981. "Speculative hyperinflations in a maximizing models: can we rule them out?," International Finance Discussion Papers 195, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  12. Benhabib, Jess & Schmitt-Grohe, Stephanie & Uribe, Martin, 1998. "The Perils of Taylor Rules," Working Papers 98-37, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  13. Leeper, Eric M., 1991. "Equilibria under 'active' and 'passive' monetary and fiscal policies," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 129-147, February.
  14. Stephanie Schmitt-Grohe & Martin Uribe, 1997. "Price level determinacy and monetary policy under a balanced-budget requirement," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 1997-17, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  15. McCallum, Bennett T., 1981. "Price level determinacy with an interest rate policy rule and rational expectations," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 319-329.
  16. Peter N. Ireland, 2001. "The Real Balance Effect," NBER Working Papers 8136, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Roberts, John M, 1995. "New Keynesian Economics and the Phillips Curve," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 27(4), pages 975-84, November.
  18. Richard Clarida & Jordi Gali & Mark Gertler, 1999. "The Science of Monetary Policy: A New Keynesian Perspective," NBER Working Papers 7147, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Sargent, Thomas J & Wallace, Neil, 1973. "The Stability of Models of Money and Growth with Perfect Foresight," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 41(6), pages 1043-48, November.
  20. James D. Hamilton & Marjorie A. Flavin, 1985. "On the Limitations of Government Borrowing: A Framework for Empirical Testing," NBER Working Papers 1632, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  21. Jeff Fuhrer & George Moore, 1993. "Inflation persistence," Proceedings, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  22. Svensson, Lars-E-O, 2001. "The Zero Bound in an Open Economy: A Foolproof Way of Escaping from a Liquidity Trap," Monetary and Economic Studies, Institute for Monetary and Economic Studies, Bank of Japan, vol. 19(S1), pages 277-312, February.
  23. George A. Akerlof & William R. Dickens & George L. Perry, 1996. "The Macroeconomics of Low Inflation," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 27(1), pages 1-76.
  24. Corsetti, Giancarlo & Roubini, Nouriel, 1991. "Fiscal deficits, public debt, and government solvency: Evidence from OECD countries," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 5(4), pages 354-380, December.
  25. John B. Taylor, 2000. "Reassessing Discretionary Fiscal Policy," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(3), pages 21-36, Summer.
  26. Mccallum, Bennet T., 1988. "Robustness properties of a rule for monetary policy," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 173-203, January.
  27. Gauti B. Eggertsson, 2003. "How to Fight Deflation in a Liquidity Trap: Committing to Being Irresponsible," IMF Working Papers 03/64, International Monetary Fund.
  28. William Kerr & Robert G. King, 1996. "Limits on interest rate rules in the IS model," Economic Quarterly, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, issue Spr, pages 47-75.
  29. Auernheimer, Leonardo, 1974. "The Honest Government's Guide to the Revenue from the Creation of Money," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(3), pages 598-606, May/June.
  30. Black, Fischer, 1974. "Uniqueness of the price level in monetary growth models with rational expectations," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 7(1), pages 53-65, January.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ime:imemes:v:23:y:2005:i:1:p:1-46. 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: (Kinken)

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.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.