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Secular stagnation and low interest rates under the fear of a government debt crisis

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  • Keiichiro Kobayashi
  • Kozo Ueda

Abstract

In this study, we explain the driving forces behind the secular stagnation associated with a persistent decrease in interest rates. To do so, we employ a model that incorporates a crisis risk triggered by an accumulation of government debt. The model shows that the fear of large-scale taxation on capital and misallocations of capital in future debt crises explains almost half the economic slowdown in Japan over the past two decades. Over the same period, the government bond yield decreases, because the uncertainty in returns on capital makes investing in government bonds becomes less risky than investing in capital.

Suggested Citation

  • Keiichiro Kobayashi & Kozo Ueda, 2020. "Secular stagnation and low interest rates under the fear of a government debt crisis," CAMA Working Papers 2020-40, Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.
  • Handle: RePEc:een:camaaa:2020-40
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Default; government bond; capital levy; lost decades; bank run;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy
    • G18 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Government Policy and Regulation
    • H12 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - Crisis Management
    • H63 - Public Economics - - National Budget, Deficit, and Debt - - - Debt; Debt Management; Sovereign Debt

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