Because severance pay is worth 2-5 years of wages in many LDCs, public sector layoffs increase the fiscal deficit in the short run. Nevertheless, generous severance pay is not as serious a macroeconomic problem as generally thought. In the case where the fiscal deficit is financed by printing money, inflation is continuously lower under plausible conditions. When the government can borrow in world capital markets and layoffs reduce the present-value wage bill, there exists a sequence of bond sales and subsequent redemptions that guarantees continuously lower inflation. This result does not hold, however, if the reform lacks credibility.