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Does Monetary Unification Lead to Excessive Debt Accumulation?

  • Beetsma, R.M.W.J.
  • Bovenberg, A.L.

If discretionary monetary policy implies an inflation bias, monetary unification boosts the accumulation of public debt. The additional debt accumulation is welfare reducing only if governments are sufficiently myopic. In the presence of myopic governments, debt ceilings play a useful role in avoiding excessive debt accumulation in a monetary union and allow a conservative, independent central bank to focus on price stability.

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Paper provided by DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure) in its series DELTA Working Papers with number 95-23.

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Length: 25 pages
Date of creation: 1995
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in Journal of Public Economics, 1999, vol. 74, pp. 299-325
Handle: RePEc:del:abcdef:95-23
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  1. Tabellini, Guido, 1986. "Money, debt and deficits in a dynamic game," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 10(4), pages 427-442, December.
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  4. Beetsma, R.M.W.J. & Jensen, H., 1996. "Inflation targets and contracts with uncertain central banker preferences," Discussion Paper 1996-93, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
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  7. Levine, Paul L & Pearlman, Joseph, 1992. "Fiscal and Monetary Policy Under EMU: Credible Inflation Targets or Unpleasant Monetary Arithmetic?," CEPR Discussion Papers 701, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Robert J. Barro & David B. Gordon, 1983. "Rules, Discretion and Reputation in a Model of Monetary Policy," NBER Working Papers 1079, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Tabellini, Guido & Alesina, Alberto, 1990. "A Positive Theory of Fiscal Deficits and Government Debt," Scholarly Articles 3612769, Harvard University Department of Economics.
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  14. Obstfeld, Maurice, 1990. "A Model of Currency Depreciation and the Debt-Inflation Spiral," CEPR Discussion Papers 431, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  15. Canzoneri, Matthew B. & Diba, Behzad T., 1991. "Fiscal deficits, financial integration, and a central bank for Europe," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 5(4), pages 381-403, December.
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  17. Jensen, Henrik, 1994. "Loss of monetary discretion in a simple dynamic policy game," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 18(3-4), pages 763-779.
  18. Rogoff, Kenneth, 1985. "The Optimal Degree of Commitment to an Intermediate Monetary Target," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 100(4), pages 1169-89, November.
  19. Thomas Krichel & Paul Levine & Joseph Pearlman, 1996. "Fiscal and monetary policy in a monetary union: Credible inflation targets or monetized debt?," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer, vol. 132(1), pages 28-54, March.
  20. Joshua Aizenman, 1994. "On The Need For Fiscal Discipline in an Union," NBER Working Papers 4656, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  22. Guy Debelle & Stanley Fischer, 1994. "How independent should a central bank be?," Conference Series ; [Proceedings], Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, vol. 38, pages 195-225.
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