Skip to main content

A Price Discrimination Analysis of Monetary Policy

Staff Report 51 | Published April 1, 1983

Download PDF


A Price Discrimination Analysis of Monetary Policy


Monetary policy is analyzed within a model that ignores transaction costs and appeals solely to legal restrictions on private intermediation to explain the coexistence of currency and interest-bearing default-free bonds. The interaction between such legal restrictions and monetary policy is illustrated in versions of overlapping generations models that contain three assets: government-issued currency and bonds and real capital. It is shown that legal restrictions and the use of both currency and bonds permit the government to levy a discriminatory inflation tax and that such a tax may be better in terms of the Pareto criterion than a uniform inflation tax.

Published in: _Review of Economic Studies_ (Vol. 51, No. 2, April 1984, pp. 279-288) Published in: _The new classical macroeconomics_ (Vol. 2, 1992, pp. 430-439)