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Seigniorage-maximizing inflation


  • Tatiana Damjanovic


  • Charles Nolan



What is the seigniorage-maximizing level of inflation? Four models formulae for the seigniorage maximizing inflation rate (SMIR) are compared. Two sticky-price models arrive at very different quantitative recommendations although both predict somewhat lower SMIRs than Cagan’s formula and a variant of a .ex-price model due to Kimbrough (2006). The models differ markedly in how inflation distorts the labour market: The Calvo model implies that inflation and output are negatively related and that output is falling in price stickiness whilst the Rotemberg cost-of-price-adjustment model implies exactly the opposite. Interestingly, if our version of the Calvo model is to be believed, the level of inflation experienced recently in advanced economies such as the USA and the UK may be quite close to the SMIR.

Suggested Citation

  • Tatiana Damjanovic & Charles Nolan, 2008. "Seigniorage-maximizing inflation," CDMA Working Paper Series 200807, Centre for Dynamic Macroeconomic Analysis.
  • Handle: RePEc:san:cdmawp:0807

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Schmitt-Grohe, Stephanie & Uribe, Martin, 2004. "Optimal fiscal and monetary policy under sticky prices," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 114(2), pages 198-230, February.
    2. Tatiana Damjanovic & Charles Nolan, 2010. "Relative Price Distortions and Inflation Persistence," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 120(547), pages 1080-1099, September.
    3. Schmitt-Grohe, Stephanie & Uribe, Martin, 2004. "Optimal fiscal and monetary policy under imperfect competition," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 26(2), pages 183-209, June.
    4. Easterly, William R & Mauro, Paolo & Schmidt-Hebbel, Klaus, 1995. "Money Demand and Seigniorage-Maximizing Inflation," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 27(2), pages 583-603, May.
    5. Rotemberg, Julio J, 1982. "Sticky Prices in the United States," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 90(6), pages 1187-1211, December.
    6. Robert E. Lucas, Jr., 2000. "Inflation and Welfare," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 68(2), pages 247-274, March.
    7. Kimbrough, Kent P., 2006. "Revenue maximizing inflation," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(8), pages 1967-1978, November.
    8. Calvo, Guillermo A., 1983. "Staggered prices in a utility-maximizing framework," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 383-398, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. Leith, Campbell & Liu, Ding, 2016. "The inflation bias under Calvo and Rotemberg pricing," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 73(C), pages 283-297.
    2. Damjanovic, Tatiana & Nolan, Charles, 2011. "Second-order approximation to the Rotemberg model around a distorted steady state," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 110(2), pages 132-135, February.
    3. Di Bartolomeo Giovanni & Tirelli Patrizio & Acocella Nicola, 2010. "Trend inflation, endogenous mark-ups and the non-vertical Phillips curve," wp.comunite 0065, Department of Communication, University of Teramo.
    4. Tatiana Damjanovic & Charles Nolan, 2009. "Second Order Accurate Approximation to the Rotemberg Model Around a Distorted Steady State," CDMA Working Paper Series 200907, Centre for Dynamic Macroeconomic Analysis, revised 15 Apr 2010.

    More about this item


    Price stickiness; Revenue maximizing inflation; Inflation tax; Seigniorage; price dispersion.;

    JEL classification:

    • E4 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates
    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy
    • E61 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Policy Objectives; Policy Designs and Consistency; Policy Coordination
    • E63 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Comparative or Joint Analysis of Fiscal and Monetary Policy; Stabilization; Treasury Policy

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