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Sovereign Money Reforms and Welfare

Philippe Bacchetta and Elena Perazzi

Cahiers de Recherches Economiques du Département d'économie from Université de Lausanne, Faculté des HEC, Département d’économie

Abstract: A monetary reform is submitted for vote to the Swiss people in 2018. The Sovereign Money Initiative proposes that all sight deposits should be controlled by the Swiss National Bank (SNB) and that the SNB could distribute its additional resources. While a sovereign money reform would clearly a ect the structure of the banking sector, it would also have macroeconomic implications, in particular because it transfers resources from banks to the central bank. The objective of this paper is to analyze these macroeconomic implications using a simple infinite-horizon open-economy model calibrated to the Swiss economy. While we consider several policy experiments, we find that there is a key trade-o between a reduction in distortionary labor taxes and an increase in the opportunity cost of holding money. However, in the proposed Swiss reform it is this latter cost that dominates and we find that the reform unambiguously lowers welfare.

Pages: 22 pp.
Date: 2018-04
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cba, nep-dge, nep-eec, nep-mac and nep-mon
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Citations: View citations in EconPapers (1)

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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:lau:crdeep:18.02

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