Publications

Working Paper No. 244 | July 1998

Can Taxes and Bonds Finance Government Spending?

This paper investigates the commonly held belief that government spending is normally financed through a combination of taxes and bond sales. The argument is a technical one and requires a detailed analysis of reserve accounting at the central bank. After carefully considering the complexities of reserve accounting, it is argued that the proceeds from taxation and bond sales are technically incapable of financing government spending and that modern governments actually finance all of their spending through the direct creation of high-powered money. The analysis carries significant implications for fiscal as well as monetary policy.


Publication Highlight

Testimony
Statement of Senior Scholar L. Randall Wray to the House Budget Committee, US House of Representatives
Reexamining the Economic Costs of Debt
Author(s): L. Randall Wray, Yeva Nersisyan
November 2019

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