Markets, Productivity, and Happiness in a Historical Perspective

Did French economists ask for inflation to reduce public debt at the end of WW2?

Teixeira Matéo, University of Lyon

The extremely rapid reduction in public debt at the end of the Second World War is regularly analysed as being the result of inflationary policies initiated by governments. This policy is said to be based on economic thinking that is less virulent towards inflation than during the interwar period. Following on from Teupe (2020), this article seeks to challenge this view by showing that only a minority of French economists actually called for inflation to be used as a tax gatherer, and that the majority still considered rising prices as dangerous.


Keywords: Public Debt

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