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Creator: Chari, V. V. and Kehoe, Patrick J. Series: Staff report (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 251 Abstract:
We provide an introduction to optimal fiscal and monetary policy using the primal approach to optimal taxation. We use this approach to address how fiscal and monetary policy should be set over the long run and over the business cycle. We find four substantive lessons for policymaking: Capital income taxes should be high initially and then roughly zero; tax rates on labor and consumption should be roughly constant; state-contingent taxes on assets should be used to provide insurance against adverse shocks; and monetary policy should be conducted so as to keep nominal interest rates close to zero. We begin optimal taxation in a static context. We then develop a general framework to analyze optimal fiscal policy. Finally, we analyze optimal monetary policy in three commonly used models of money: a cash-credit economy, a money-in-the-utility-function economy, and a shopping-time economy.
Palavra-chave: Capital income taxation, Primal approach, Tax smoothing, Ramsey problems, and Friedman rule Sujeito: E52 - Monetary Policy, E62 - Fiscal Policy, E60 - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook: General, E50 - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit: General, H21 - Taxation and Subsidies: Efficiency; Optimal Taxation, and H30 - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents: General
Creator: Chari, V. V. and Kehoe, Patrick J. Series: Working paper (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 317 Abstract:
This paper examines the limiting behavior of cooperative and noncooperative fiscal policies as countries market power goes to zero. In the first part we provide sufficient conditions for these policies to converge. In the second part we provide examples where these policies diverge. Briefly, we show that if there are unremovable domestic distortions then there can be gains to coordination between countries even when countries have no ability to affect world prices. These results are at variance with the received wisdom in the optimal tariff literature. The key distinction is that we model explicitly the spending decisions of the government while the optimal tariff literature does not.
Palavra-chave: Fiscal policy and International economic relations Sujeito: N10 - Economic History: Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics; Industrial Structure; Growth; Fluctuations: General, International, or Comparative and F42 - International Policy Coordination and Transmission
Creator: Chari, V. V., Jones, Larry E., and Marimon, Ramon, 1953- Series: Working paper (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 582 Abstract:
In U.S. elections, voters often vote for candidates from different parties for president and Congress. Voters also express dissatisfaction with the performance of Congress as a whole and satisfaction with their own representative. We develop a model of split-ticket voting in which government spending is financed by uniform taxes but the benefits from this spending are concentrated. While the model generates split-ticket voting, overall spending is too high only if the president’s powers are limited. Overall spending is too high in a parliamentary system, and our model can be used as the basis of an argument for term limits.
Sujeito: H40 - Publicly Provided Goods: General, H00 - Public Economics: General, and H30 - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents: General
Creator: Heathcote, Jonathan, Perri, Fabrizio, and Violante, Giovanni L. Series: Staff report (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 436 Abstract:
We conduct a systematic empirical study of cross-sectional inequality in the United States, integrating data from the Current Population Survey, the Panel Study of Income Dynamics, the Consumer Expenditure Survey, and the Survey of Consumer Finances. In order to understand how different dimensions of inequality are related via choices, markets, and institutions, we follow the mapping suggested by the household budget constraint from individual wages to individual earnings, to household earnings, to disposable income, and, ultimately, to consumption and wealth. We document a continuous and sizable increase in wage inequality over the sample period. Changes in the distribution of hours worked sharpen the rise in earnings inequality before 1982, but mitigate its increase thereafter. Taxes and transfers compress the level of income inequality, especially at the bottom of the distribution, but have little effect on the overall trend. Finally, access to financial markets has limited both the level and growth of consumption inequality.
Palavra-chave: Consumption, income, and wealth inequality, Inequality over the life cycle, and Wage dynamics Sujeito: D31 - Personal Income, Wealth, and Their Distributions, E24 - Employment; Unemployment; Wages; Intergenerational Income Distribution; Aggregate Human Capital; Aggregate Labor Productivity, H31 - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents: Household, and J31 - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
Creator: Ales, Laurence, Carapella, Francesca, Maziero, Pricila, and Weber, Warren E. Series: Working paper (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 641 Abstract:
Prior to 1863, state-chartered banks in the United States issued notes–dollar-denominated promises to pay specie to the bearer on demand. Although these notes circulated at par locally, they usually were quoted at a discount outside the local area. These discounts varied by both the location of the bank and the location where the discount was being quoted. Further, these discounts were asymmetric across locations, meaning that the discounts quoted in location A on the notes of banks in location B generally differed from the discounts quoted in location B on the notes of banks in location A. Also, discounts generally increased when banks suspended payments on their notes. In this paper we construct a random matching model to qualitatively match these facts about banknote discounts. To attempt to account for locational differences, the model has agents that come from two distinct locations. Each location also has bankers that can issue notes. Banknotes are accepted in exchange because banks are required to produce when a banknote is presented for redemption and their past actions are public information. Overall, the model delivers predictions consistent with the behavior of discounts.
Palavra-chave: Banknotes, Random matching, and Banks Sujeito: G21 - Banks; Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages, N21 - Economic History: Financial Markets and Institutions: U.S.; Canada: Pre-1913, and E50 - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit: General
Creator: Backus, David and Kehoe, Patrick J. Series: Working paper (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 359 Abstract:
We show that some classes of sterilized interventions have no effect on equilibrium prices or quantities. The proof does not depend on complete markets, infinitely-lived agents, Ricardian equivalence, monetary neutrality, or the law of one price. Moreover, regressions of exchange rates or interest differentials on variables measuring the currency composition of the debt may contain no information, in our theoretical economy, about the effectiveness of such interventions. Another class of interventions requires simultaneous changes in monetary and fiscal policy; their effects depend, generally, on the influence of tax distortions, government spending, and money supplies on economic behavior. We suggest that in applying the portfolio balance approach to the study of intervention, lack 01 explicit modeling of these features is a serious flaw.
Palavra-chave: Debts, external and Foreign exchange law and legislation Sujeito: F31 - Foreign Exchange, H30 - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents: General, and F41 - Open Economy Macroeconomics
Creator: Mulligan, Casey B. Series: Great depressions of the twentieth century Abstract:
I prove some theorems for competitive equilibria in the presence of distortionary taxes and other restraints of trade, and use those theorems to motivate an algorithm for (exactly) computing and empirically evaluating competitive equilibria in dynamic economies. Although its economics is relatively sophisticated, the algorithm is so computationally economical that it can be implemented with a few lines in a spreadsheet. Although a competitive equilibrium models interactions between all sectors, all consumer types, and all time periods, I show how my algorithm permits separate empirical evaluation of these pieces of the model and hence is practical even when very little data is available. For similar reasons, these evaluations are not particularly sensitive to how data is partitioned into "trends" and "cycles." I then compute a real business cycle model with distortionary taxes that fits aggregate U.S. time series for the period 1929-50 and conclude that, if it is to explain aggregate behavior during the period, government policy must have heavily taxed labor income during the Great Depression and lightly taxed it during the war. In other words, the challenge for the competitive equilibrium approach is not so much why output might change over time, but why the marginal product of labor and the marginal value of leisure diverged so much and why that wedge persisted so long. In this sense, explaining aggregate behavior during the period has been reduced to a public finance question - were actual government policies distorting behavior in the same direction and magnitude as government policies in the model?
Palavra-chave: Depressions, Taxes, World War 2, and Competitive equilibrium models Sujeito: H30 - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents: General, E32 - Business Fluctuations; Cycles, and C68 - Computable General Equilibrium Models
Creator: Golosov, Mikhail and Tsyvinski, Aleh Series: Working paper (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 628 Abstract:
In this paper we describe how to optimally design a disability insurance system. The key friction in the model is imperfectly observable disability. We solve a dynamic mechanism design problem and provide a theoretical and numerical characterization of the social optimum. We then propose a simple tax system that implements an optimal allocation as a competitive equilibrium. The tax system that we propose includes only taxes and transfers that are similar to those already present in the U.S. tax code: a savings tax and an asset-tested transfer program. Using a numerical simulation, we compare our optimal disability system to the current disability system. Our results suggest a significant welfare gain from switching to an optimal system.
Sujeito: E60 - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook: General, H20 - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue: General, and H30 - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents: General