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Redistribution and Optimal Monetary Policy: Results and Open Questions

  • Stefania Albanesi

    ()

    (Columbia University, NBER and CEPR)

What are the properties of optimal fiscal and monetary policies with heterogeneous agents? This is a pressing question, given the wealth of evidence on heterogeneity in cash holdings and labor income. Yet, until recently it remained largely unexplored. In this paper, I show that with heterogeneity the Friedman rule is optimal only if positive nominal interest rates do not ameliorate constraints on redistribution. With an empirically plausible cross-sectional correlation between money holdings and labor income, the Friedman rule is optimal if the government favors redistribution to the poor. I discuss these findings and propose several directions for future research.

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File URL: http://www.rivistapoliticaeconomica.it/2007/lug-ago/albanesi.pdf
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Article provided by SIPI Spa in its journal Rivista di Politica Economica.

Volume (Year): 97 (2007)
Issue (Month): 4 (July-August)
Pages: 3-48

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Handle: RePEc:rpo:ripoec:v:97:y:2007:i:4:p:3-48
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  1. Joydeep Bhattacharya & Joseph H. Haslag & Antoine Martin, 2005. "Heterogeneity, Redistribution, And The Friedman Rule," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 46(2), pages 437-454, 05.
  2. Persson , Mats & Persson , Torsten & Svensson, Lars E.O., 2004. "Time Consistency of Fiscal and Monetary Policy: A Solution," Seminar Papers 734, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
  3. Carlos E. da Costa & Iván Werning, 2008. "On the Optimality of the Friedman Rule with Heterogeneous Agents and Nonlinear Income Taxation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 116(1), pages 82-112, 02.
  4. Mikhail Golosov & Narayana Kocherlakota & Aleh Tsyvinski, 2003. "Optimal Indirect and Capital Taxation," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 70(3), pages 569-587.
  5. Narayana R. Kocherlakota, 2005. "Zero Expected Wealth Taxes: A Mirrlees Approach to Dynamic Optimal Taxation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 73(5), pages 1587-1621, 09.
  6. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1977. "Rules Rather Than Discretion: The Inconsistency of Optimal Plans," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 473-91, June.
  7. Albanesi, Stefania & Sleet, Christopher, 2003. "Dynamic Optimal Taxation with Private Information," CEPR Discussion Papers 4006, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Attanasio, Orazio & Guiso, Luigi & Jappelli, Tullio, 1998. "The Demand for Money, Financial Innovation and the Welfare Cost of Inflation: An Analysis with Households' Data," CEPR Discussion Papers 1927, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. Robert E. Lucas Jr. & Nancy L. Stokey, 1982. "Optimal Fiscal and Monetary Policy in an Economy Without Capital," Discussion Papers 532, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  10. Isabel Correia & Pedro Teles, 1999. "The Optimal Inflation Tax," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 2(2), pages 325-346, April.
  11. Rogers, Carol Ann, 1986. "The effect of distributive goals on the time inconsistency of optimal taxes," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 251-269, March.
  12. Atkinson, A. B. & Stiglitz, J. E., 1976. "The design of tax structure: Direct versus indirect taxation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 6(1-2), pages 55-75.
  13. David K. Levine, 1991. "Asset Trading Mechanisms and Expansionary Policy," Levine's Working Paper Archive 43, David K. Levine.
  14. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521629560 is not listed on IDEAS
  15. Erosa, Andres & Ventura, Gustavo, 2002. "On inflation as a regressive consumption tax," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(4), pages 761-795, May.
  16. Albanesi, Stefania, 2003. "Optimal and Time-Consistent Monetary and Fiscal Policy with Heterogeneous Agents," CEPR Discussion Papers 3713, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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