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Money, Credit Constraints, and Economic Activity


  • Alan S. Blinder
  • Joseph E. Stiglitz


When government expenditures exceed current tax revenues, the resulting deficit must be financed either by issuing bonds, which imply obligations to levy future taxes, or by creating high-powered money. The choice between money and bonds is often thought to be of great moment for both real and nominal variables; that is, monetary policy matters.There is by now a wide empirical consensus that monetary policy has effects on real variables like output and employment. But there is far less agreement about why this is so. The purpose of this paper is to take issue with some currently fashionable views of why money has real effects,and to suggest a new theory, or rather resurrect an old one--the loanable funds theory--and give it new, improved microfoundations.

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  • Alan S. Blinder & Joseph E. Stiglitz, 1983. "Money, Credit Constraints, and Economic Activity," NBER Working Papers 1084, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:1084
    Note: EFG

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Mishkin, Frederic S, 1982. "Does Anticipated Monetary Policy Matter? An Econometric Investigation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 90(1), pages 22-51, February.
    2. Robert G. King & Charles I. Plosser, 1982. "The Behavior of Money, Credit, and Prices in a Real Business Cycle," NBER Working Papers 0853, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Gray, Jo Anna, 1976. "Wage indexation: A macroeconomic approach," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 2(2), pages 221-235, April.
    4. Kohn, Meir, 1981. "A Loanable Funds Theory of Unemployment and Monetary Disequilibrium," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(5), pages 859-879, December.
    5. Tobin, James, 1969. "A General Equilibrium Approach to Monetary Theory," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 1(1), pages 15-29, February.
    6. Bernanke, Ben S, 1983. "Nonmonetary Effects of the Financial Crisis in Propagation of the Great Depression," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(3), pages 257-276, June.
    7. Joseph E. Stiglitz, 1983. "On the Relevance or Irrelevance of Public Financial Policy," NBER Working Papers 1057, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Alan S. Blinder, 1982. "On the Monetization of Deficits," NBER Working Papers 1052, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Lucas, Robert E, Jr, 1973. "Some International Evidence on Output-Inflation Tradeoffs," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 63(3), pages 326-334, June.
    10. Stiglitz, Joseph E & Weiss, Andrew, 1981. "Credit Rationing in Markets with Imperfect Information," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(3), pages 393-410, June.
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