Fiscal Policy vs. Monetary Policy

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Fiscal Policy vs. Monetary Policy

With America in recovery from the attacks on our freedom and our economy, many wonder if we will return to phase one (expansion) and how long it will take to reach phase two (recession) again. The Keynesian Theorists of America believe that the government should actively pursue Monetary policies (enacted by the Federal Reserve Bank) and Fiscal policies (enacted by Congress) to reach adjustments to price, employment, and growth levels. In our full market economy, we must use these economic policies to control aggregate demand. When these policies are used to stimulate the economy during a recession, it is said that the government is pursuing expansionary economic policies.

Fiscal Policy is described as changing the taxing and spending of the federal government for purposes of expanding or contracting the level of aggregate demand; these are designed to increase short-run economic growth. In a recession, an expansionary fiscal policy involves lowering taxes and increasing government spending. By cutting taxes, increasing government spending programs, and increasing transfer payments, more money is in the economy, more income, and more spending. This can be done through the federal budget process; however, the problem with fiscal policy is lag time. This process can take so long (as long as a year or more) that Discretionary Fiscal Policy is very rarely used in the federal government; still, the lag between a change in fiscal policy and its effect on output tends to be shorter than the lag for monetary policy. Instead, the government uses Nondiscretionary Fiscal Policy (Automatic Stabilizers). This fiscal policy is built into the structure of federal taxes and spending. Some examples of this are the progressive income tax (the major source of federal revenue) and the welfare systems, which both act to increase AD in recessions.

Monetary policy is under the control of the Federal Reserve System and is completely...
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