cheap money

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Cheap Money

A monetary policy in which a central bank sets low interest rates so that credit is easily attainable. This makes borrowing easy for business, which stimulates investment and expansion of operations. The immediate result of cheap money is a boost in stock prices; in the medium term, cheap money promotes economic growth. However, if cheap money remains in the economy for too long, it can lead to a situation in which there is a glut of currency or too many dollars chasing too few goods and services leading to inflation. For this reason, most central banks alternate between policies of cheap money and tight money in varying degrees to encourage growth while keeping inflation under control.

cheap money

cheap money

a government policy whereby the CENTRAL BANK is authorized to purchase government BONDS on the open market to facilitate an increase in the MONEY SUPPLY (see MONETARY POLICY).

The increase in money supply serves to reduce INTEREST RATES, which encourages INVESTMENT because previously unprofitable investments now become profitable as a result of the reduced cost of borrowing (see MARGINAL EFFICIENCY OF CAPITAL/INVESTMENT).

Cheap money policy, through MONEY SUPPLY/SPENDING LINKAGES, increases AGGREGATE DEMAND. Compare TIGHT MONEY. See LIQUIDITY TRAP.