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The Welfare Effects of Liquidity Constraints


  • Jappelli, Tullio
  • Pagano, Marco


We analyse the welfare implications of liquidity constraints for households in an overlapping generations model with growth. In a closed economy with exogenous technical progress, liquidity constraints reduce welfare if the economy is dynamically inefficient. But if it is dynamically efficient, some degree of financial repression is optimal in the steady state, even though it hurts some generations in the transition. In an open economy with capital mobility, financial repression of domestic households is never optimal at the national level; but generalized capital mobility leads to an inefficiently low steady-state supply of saving at the world level. With endogenous technical progress, financial repression may increase welfare even along the transition path, thus leading to a Pareto improvement. In this case the optimal degree of financial repression increases as the economy grows.

Suggested Citation

  • Jappelli, Tullio & Pagano, Marco, 1995. "The Welfare Effects of Liquidity Constraints," CEPR Discussion Papers 1108, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:1108

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    8. Bencivenga, Valerie R & Smith, Bruce D, 1992. "Deficits, Inflation, and the Banking System in Developing Countries: The Optimal Degree of Financial Repression," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 44(4), pages 767-790, October.
    9. Tullio Jappelli & Marco Pagano, 1994. "Saving, Growth, and Liquidity Constraints," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 109(1), pages 83-109.
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    Cited by:

    1. Aiyagari, S. Rao & McGrattan, Ellen R., 1998. "The optimum quantity of debt," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(3), pages 447-469, October.
    2. LG Deidda & F. Cerina, 2002. "Do we need more time for leisure?," Working Paper CRENoS 200203, Centre for North South Economic Research, University of Cagliari and Sassari, Sardinia.
    3. von Furstenberg, George M., 2004. "The Contribution of Rapid Financial Development to Asymmetric Growth of Manufacturing Industries: Common Claims vs. Evidence for Poland," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2004,34, Deutsche Bundesbank.
    4. Wigger, Berthold U, 2001. "Pareto-Improving Intergenerational Transfers," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 53(2), pages 260-280, April.
    5. J. Manrique & K. Ojah, 2004. "Credits and non-interest rate determinants of loan demand: a Spanish case study," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 36(8), pages 781-791.
    6. Alvarez-Cuadrado, Francisco & Japaridze, Irakli, 2017. "Trickle-down consumption, financial deregulation, inequality, and indebtedness," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 134(C), pages 1-26.
    7. Ben J. Heijdra & Laurie S. M. Reijnders, 2016. "Human Capital Accumulation and the Macroeconomy in an Ageing Society," De Economist, Springer, vol. 164(3), pages 297-334, September.
    8. David B. Gross & Nicholas S. Souleles, 2001. "Do Liquidity Constraints and Interest Rates Matter for Consumer Behavior? Evidence from Credit Card Data," NBER Working Papers 8314, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Thierry Bracke & Matthieu Bussière & Michael Fidora & Roland Straub, 2010. "A Framework for Assessing Global Imbalances -super-1," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 33(9), pages 1140-1174, September.
    10. Luca Casolaro & Leonardo Gambacorta & Luigi Guiso, 2005. "Regulation, formal and informal enforcement and the development of the household loan market. Lessons from Italy," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 560, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
    11. Erasmo Papagni, 2008. "The Long-run Effects of Household Liquidity Constraints and Taxation on Fertility, Education, Saving, and Growth," Discussion Papers 11_2008, D.E.S. (Department of Economic Studies), University of Naples "Parthenope", Italy.
    12. LG Deidda, 2000. "On the real effects of financial development," Working Paper CRENoS 200010, Centre for North South Economic Research, University of Cagliari and Sassari, Sardinia.
    13. S. Rao Aiyagari & Ellen R. McGrattan, 2003. "The Optimum Quantity of Debt: Technical Appendix," Annals of Economics and Finance, Society for AEF, vol. 4(1), pages 193-217, May.
    14. Clemens, Christiane & Heinemann, Maik, 2015. "Endogenous growth and wealth inequality under incomplete markets and idiosyncratic risk," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 300-317.

    More about this item


    Liquidity Constraints; Saving; Welfare;

    JEL classification:

    • E21 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Consumption; Saving; Wealth
    • O16 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Financial Markets; Saving and Capital Investment; Corporate Finance and Governance


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