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On "rusting" money: Silvio Gesell's Schwundgeld reconsidered

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  • Rehme, Günther

Abstract

Silvio Gesell hypothesized that money depreciation is economically and socially beneficial, ideas that have often been contended. Here I analyze that in a Sidrauski model in which households additionally have a "love of wealth"-motive. It is shown Gesell's claims may be valid in a demand-determined, short-run equilibrium and why money depreciation overcomes the zero lower bound on nominal interest rates. However, for a typical long-run equilibrium introducing money depreciation in isolation may be bad. But money depreciation, when coupled with expansionary monetary policy, is a necessary condition for a positive Mundell-Tobin effect on long-run real variables and so creates wealth in the model. It is found that this also holds in the transition to the long-run equilibrium. Hence, the spirit of Gesell's hypotheses can be verified for a plausible, long-run environment.

Suggested Citation

  • Rehme, Günther, 2018. "On "rusting" money: Silvio Gesell's Schwundgeld reconsidered," Darmstadt Discussion Papers in Economics 233, Darmstadt University of Technology, Department of Law and Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:darddp:233
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Economic Performance; Depreciating Money; Zero Lower Bound; Demonetization; Love of Wealth;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • E1 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General Aggregative Models
    • E5 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit
    • O4 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity

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