Author(s)

Tong, Bing

Abstract

Capacity reduction has been a recurrent theme in China's economic policy. The central government takes various administrative measures to remove excess capacity, accumulated mainly due to underpriced production factors and distorted incentives. I evaluate the de-capacity policy in a series of models and prove that its effects depend critically on its persistence and monetary policy regime. Under an interest rate peg, a transient policy that changes markup temporarily is ineffective and even expansionary, whereas a persistent policy is effective due to a negative wealth effect. A permanent de-capacity policy can lead to over-reactions in macro variables because the interest rate peg adds positive feedback to the economy. Therefore, the de-capacity policy has greater uncertainty under the interest rate peg. As a policy tool, it easily deviates from its target and brings about excessive volatility. However, long-run price stability and a gradually advanced de-capacity policy are conducive to the achievement of policy targets.


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Tong, B.: The Effects of Capacity Reduction Policy Under the Interest Rate Peg in China, in: Journal of Asian Economics, Vol. 74, 101311, 2021