Money and Credit Redux

Working Paper Number: 
WP 15-08

We analyze money and credit as competing payment instruments in decentralized exchange. In natural environments, we show the economy does not need both: if credit is easy, money is irrelevant; if credit is tight, money can be essential, but then credit is irrelevant. Changes in credit conditions are neutral because real balances respond endogenously to keep total liquidity constant. This is true for exogenous or endogenous policy and debt limits, secured or unsecured lending, and a general class of pricing mechanisms. While we show how to overturn some results, the benchmark model suggests credit might matter less than people think.

JEL Codes: 
E42, E51

Fabrizio Mattesini

Randall Wright