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Managing Credit Booms and Busts: A Pigouvian Taxation Approach

  • Olivier Jeanne


    (Peterson Institute for International Economics)

  • Anton Korinek

We study a dynamic model in which the interaction between debt accumulation and asset prices magnifies credit booms and busts. We find that borrowers do not internalize these feedback effects and therefore suffer from excessively large booms and busts in both credit flows and asset prices. We show that a Pigouvian tax on borrowing may induce borrowers to internalize these externalities and increase welfare. We calibrate the model with reference to (1) the US small and medium-sized enterprise sector and (2) the household sector and find the optimal tax to be countercyclical in both cases, dropping to zero in busts and rising to approximately half a percentage point of the amount of debt outstanding during booms.

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Paper provided by Peterson Institute for International Economics in its series Working Paper Series with number WP10-12.

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Date of creation: Sep 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iie:wpaper:wp10-12
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  1. Enrique G. Mendoza & Katherine A. Smith, 2004. "Quantitative Implication of A Debt-Deflation Theory of Sudden Stops and Asset Prices," NBER Working Papers 10940, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Bernanke, Ben S. & Gertler, Mark & Gilchrist, Simon, 1999. "The financial accelerator in a quantitative business cycle framework," Handbook of Macroeconomics, in: J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Macroeconomics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 21, pages 1341-1393 Elsevier.
  3. Enrique G. Mendoza, 2005. "Real Exchange Rate Volatility and the Price of Nontradable Goods in Economies Prone to Sudden Stops," ECONOMIA JOURNAL OF THE LATIN AMERICAN AND CARIBBEAN ECONOMIC ASSOCIATION, ECONOMIA JOURNAL OF THE LATIN AMERICAN AND CARIBBEAN ECONOMIC ASSOCIATION, August.
  4. Urban Jermann & Vincenzo Quadrini, 2012. "Macroeconomic Effects of Financial Shocks," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(1), pages 238-71, February.
  5. Bianchi, Javier, 2009. "Overborrowing and Systemic Externalities in the Business Cycle," MPRA Paper 15114, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  6. repec:bla:restud:v:75:y:2008:i:3:p:809-833 is not listed on IDEAS
  7. Carroll, Christopher D., 2006. "The method of endogenous gridpoints for solving dynamic stochastic optimization problems," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 91(3), pages 312-320, June.
  8. Korinek, Anton, 2011. "Systemic risk-taking: amplification effects, externalities, and regulatory responses," Working Paper Series 1345, European Central Bank.
  9. Jonathan David Ostry & Atish R. Ghosh & Karl Friedrich Habermeier & Marcos Chamon & Mahvash Saeed Qureshi & Dennis B. S. Reinhardt, 2010. "Capital Inflows: The Role of Controls," IMF Staff Position Notes 2010/04, International Monetary Fund.
  10. Charles T. Carlstrom & Timothy S. Fuerst, 1996. "Agency costs, net worth, and business fluctuations: a computable general equilibrium analysis," Working Paper 9602, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
  11. Olivier Jeanne & Anton Korinek, 2010. "Excessive Volatility in Capital Flows: A Pigouvian Taxation Approach," Working Paper Series WP10-5, Peterson Institute for International Economics.
  12. Javier Bianchi & Enrique G. Mendoza, 2010. "Overborrowing, Financial Crises and 'Macro-prudential' Taxes," NBER Working Papers 16091, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Adrian, Tobias & Shin, Hyun Song, 2010. "Liquidity and leverage," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 418-437, July.
  14. Anton Korinek, 2009. "Systemic Risk: Amplification Effects, Externalities, and Policy Responses," Working Papers 155, Oesterreichische Nationalbank (Austrian Central Bank).
  15. Christopher D. Carroll, 2004. "Theoretical Foundations of Buffer Stock Saving," Economics Working Paper Archive 517, The Johns Hopkins University,Department of Economics.
  16. Guido Lorenzoni, 2007. "Inefficient Credit Booms," NBER Working Papers 13639, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Enrique G. Mendoza, 2006. "Real Exchange Rate Volatility and the Price of Nontradables in Sudden-Stop-Prone Economies," IMF Working Papers 06/88, International Monetary Fund.
  18. Markus K. Brunnermeier, 2009. "Deciphering the Liquidity and Credit Crunch 2007-2008," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 23(1), pages 77-100, Winter.
  19. Ricardo J. Caballero & Arvind Krishnamurthy, 2003. "Excessive Dollar Debt: Financial Development and Underinsurance," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 58(2), pages 867-894, 04.
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