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Optimal Policy in OG Models


  • Christian Ghiglino

    (Copenhagen Business School)

  • Mich Tvede

    (Institute of Economics, University of Copenhagen)


In the present paper general stationary overlapping generations economies with many commodities in every period and many different consumers in every generation are considered. A government maximizes an utilitarian social welfare function, that is the sum of weighted averages of utilities for generations, through fiscal policy, i.e. monetary transfers and taxes. Both situations with and without time discounting are considered. It is shown that if the discount factor is sufficiently close to one then the optimal policy stabilizes the economy, i.e. the equilibrium path has the turnpike property. Moreover the fiscal policy is shown to be time-consistent.

Suggested Citation

  • Christian Ghiglino & Mich Tvede, 1999. "Optimal Policy in OG Models," Discussion Papers 99-23, University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:kud:kuiedp:9923

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Yano, Makoto, 1985. "Competitive Equilibria on Turnpikes in a McKenzie Economy, II: An Asymptotic Turnpike Theorem," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 26(3), pages 661-669, October.
    2. Grandmont, Jean-Michel, 1985. "On Endogenous Competitive Business Cycles," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 53(5), pages 995-1045, September.
    3. Balasko, Yves & Cass, David & Shell, Karl, 1980. "Existence of competitive equilibrium in a general overlapping-generations model," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 307-322, December.
    4. Ghiglino, Christian & Tvede, Mich, 1995. "Endowments, stability, and fluctuations in OG models," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 621-653, April.
    5. Calvo, Guillermo A & Obstfeld, Maurice, 1988. "Optimal Time-Consistent Fiscal Policy with Finite Lifetimes," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(2), pages 411-432, March.
    6. Lionel W. McKenzie, 2012. "turnpike theory," The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics, Palgrave Macmillan.
    7. Dutta, Prajit K., 1991. "What do discounted optima converge to?: A theory of discount rate asymptotics in economic models," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 55(1), pages 64-94, October.
    8. Yano, Makoto, 1984. "Competitive Equilibria on Turnpikes in a McKenzie Economy, I: A Neighborhood Turnpike Theorem," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 25(3), pages 695-717, October.
    9. Grandmont, Jean-Michel, 1986. "Stabilizing competitive business cycles," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 57-76, October.
    10. Reichlin, Pietro, 1986. "Equilibrium cycles in an overlapping generations economy with production," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 89-102, October.
    11. Benhabib, Jess & Day, Richard H., 1982. "A characterization of erratic dynamics in, the overlapping generations model," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 4(1), pages 37-55, November.
    12. Dutta, P.K., 1991. "What Do Discounted Optima Converge To? A Theory of Discount Rate Asymptotics in Economic Models," RCER Working Papers 264, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
    13. Bewley, Truman F., 1972. "Existence of equilibria in economies with infinitely many commodities," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 4(3), pages 514-540, June.
    14. Makoto Yano, 1998. "On the Dual Stability of a von Neumann Facet and the Inefficacy of Temporary Fiscal Policy," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 66(2), pages 427-452, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Soares, Jorge, 2015. "Borrowing constraints, parental altruism and welfare," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 1-20.
    2. Erosa, Andres & Gervais, Martin, 2002. "Optimal Taxation in Life-Cycle Economies," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 105(2), pages 338-369, August.
    3. Creedy, John & Li, Shuyun May & Moslehi, Solmaz, 2010. "Inequality Aversion And The Optimal Composition Of Government Expenditure," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 14(S2), pages 290-306, November.
    4. Jean-Michel Courtault & Bertrand Crettez & Naïla Hayek, 2005. "Allais's Trading Process And The Dynamic Evolution of an OLG Markets Economy," Post-Print halshs-00448184, HAL.
    5. John Creedy & Shuyun May Li & Solmaz Moslehi, 2008. "The Composition of Government Expenditure in an Overlapping Generations Model," Department of Economics - Working Papers Series 1043, The University of Melbourne.
    6. Erkki Koskela & Mikko Puhakka, 2003. "Stabilizing Competitive Cycles with Distortionary Taxation," CESifo Working Paper Series 947, CESifo Group Munich.

    More about this item


    overlapping generations economies; economic policy; turnpike property; discounting;

    JEL classification:

    • D51 - Microeconomics - - General Equilibrium and Disequilibrium - - - Exchange and Production Economies
    • D91 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics - - - Role and Effects of Psychological, Emotional, Social, and Cognitive Factors on Decision Making
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy
    • H20 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - General

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