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Loanable Funds Theory

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Suppose the total demand and supply of loanable funds (in billions) are as follows:

Quantity demanded of loanable funds Interest rate (percent) Quantity supplied of loanable funds Surplus (+)
or
shortage (-)
85 4 72 _____
80 6 73 _____
75 8 75 _____
70 10 77 _____
65 12 79 _____
60 14 81 _____

(a) What will be the market or equilibrium interest rate? What is the equilibrium quantity of loanable funds? Complete the surplus-shortage column.
(b) Why will 4% not be the equilibrium interest rate in this market? Why not 14%?
(c) Now suppose that the government establishes a usury loan that sets the interest rate at 6%. Explain the economic effects of this usury law.

Briefly explain the loanable funds theory of interest rate determination. How would the following situations affect the equilibrium interest rate in the loanable funds market?
(a) The states agree to abolish sales taxes.
(b) The government reduces the budget deficit.
(c) Technological improvements are made to increase expected rates of return.

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Solution Summary

Loanable funds theory; equilibrium interest rate; economic effects of usury law.

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Interest rates and equilibrium in loanable funds market

7.(a) Within the loanable funds theory, graphically show the effect of an increase in the money supply, assumed to be determined solely by the Fed, on the supply and demand for loanable funds and the equilibrium rate of interest assuming a constant real rate of interest and expected inflation to be constant.

(b) Illustrate and discuss how an autonomous increase in the expected rate of inflation will change the equilibrium nominal interest rate. Consider an initial real rate of interest of 3 percent and an expected inflation rate of 2 percent. If the expected rate of inflation rises to 4 percent with the real interest rate constant, what would the resulting nominal interest rate become, using the Fisher relationship? The rise in the expected rate of inflation is considered to remain at the higher level. Define your terms and discuss a recommended monetary policy to achieve economic stabilization with price stability and an improvement in the balance of payments.

(c) Starting from an equilibrium position as in 7.a, discuss the effects of the conduct of a more restrictive monetary policy if the markets believe that a Fed tightening will lower future (next period) inflation. How might a recession occur under this scenario?

HINTS: Recall the Fisher relationship where (1+i) = (1+r)(1+pe), where i is the nominal interest rate, r is the required real rate of return before taxes, and pe is the expected rate of inflation.

DLF = I + G - T + NX I = real investment; NX = net exports
G - T = the government deficit (excess of government spending over tax revenues).
SLF = S + Ms - H S = private savings H = desired hoarding
Ms = change in the money supply (under Federal Reserve discretionary control).

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