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Scarcity of Safe Assets, Inflation, and the Policy Trap

Listed author(s):
  • Andolfatto, David

    (Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis)

  • Williamson, Stephen D.

    (Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis)

We construct a model in which all consolidated government debt is used in transactions, with money being more widely acceptable. When asset market constraints bind, the model can deliver low real interest rates and positive rates of inflation at the zero lower bound. Optimal monetary policy in the face of a financial crisis shock implies a positive nominal interest rate. The model reveals some novel perils of Taylor rules.

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Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis in its series Working Papers with number 2015-2.

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Length: 42 pages
Date of creation: 23 Jan 2015
Handle: RePEc:fip:fedlwp:2015-002
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  1. Benhabib, Jess & Schmitt-Grohe, Stephanie & Uribe, Martin, 2001. "The Perils of Taylor Rules," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 96(1-2), pages 40-69, January.
  2. Ricardo Lagos & Randall Wright, 2005. "A Unified Framework for Monetary Theory and Policy Analysis," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(3), pages 463-484, June.
  3. 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.
  4. Sanches, Daniel & Williamson, Stephen, 2010. "Money and credit with limited commitment and theft," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 145(4), pages 1525-1549, July.
  5. Bansal, Ravi & Coleman, Wilbur John, II, 1996. "A Monetary Explanation of the Equity Premium, Term Premium, and Risk-Free Rate Puzzles," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(6), pages 1135-1171, December.
  6. Woodford, Michael, 1995. "Price-level determinacy without control of a monetary aggregate," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 1-46, December.
  7. Gorton, Gary B., 2010. "Slapped by the Invisible Hand: The Panic of 2007," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199734153.
  8. Lawrence J. Christiano & Martin S. Eichenbaum & Mathias Trabandt, 2015. "Understanding the Great Recession," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 7(1), pages 110-167, January.
  9. Williamson, Stephen D., 2014. "Low Real Interest Rates, Collateral Misrepresentation, and Monetary Policy," Working Papers 2014-26, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, revised 09 Sep 2016.
  10. Lawrence Christiano, 2014. "Understanding the Great Recession," Annual Meeting Plenary 2014-1, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  11. Timothy J. Kehoe & David K. Levine, 1993. "Debt-Constrained Asset Markets," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 60(4), pages 865-888.
  12. Huberto Ennis, 2014. "A simple general equilibrium model of large excess reserves," 2014 Meeting Papers 1357, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  13. Gauti B. Eggertsson & Paul Krugman, 2012. "Debt, Deleveraging, and the Liquidity Trap: A Fisher-Minsky-Koo Approach," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 127(3), pages 1469-1513.
  14. Shouyong Shi, 1997. "A Divisible Search Model of Fiat Money," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(1), pages 75-102, January.
  15. Lucas, Robert E, Jr & Stokey, Nancy L, 1987. "Money and Interest in a Cash-in-Advance Economy," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(3), pages 491-513, May.
  16. Stephen D. Williamson, 2012. "Liquidity, Monetary Policy, and the Financial Crisis: A New Monetarist Approach," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(6), pages 2570-2605, October.
  17. Ivan Werning, 2011. "Managing a Liquidity Trap: Monetary and Fiscal Policy," 2011 Meeting Papers 1435, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  18. Williamson, Stephen D., 2016. "Scarce collateral, the term premium, and quantitative easing," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 164(C), pages 136-165.
  19. Michael Woodford, 2012. "Methods of policy accommodation at the interest-rate lower bound," Proceedings - Economic Policy Symposium - Jackson Hole, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, pages 185-288.
  20. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1990. "Liquidity and interest rates," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 50(2), pages 237-264, April.
  21. 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.
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