The IMF Working Papers series is designed to make IMF staff research available to a wide audience. Almost 300 Working Papers are released each year, covering a wide range of theoretical and analytical topics, including balance of payments, monetary and fiscal issues, global liquidity, and national and international economic developments.
This paper studies the effects that the inability of individuals to borrow against future income has on economic growth. The model assumes that human capital, which is accumulated through education, is the only factor of production. It is shown that liquidity constraints reduce growth. Further, in the presence of externalities that may induce two equilibria, it is shown that liquidity constraints not only reduce the rate of growth in the high-growth equilibrium, but can also make the low-growth equilibrium more likely to occur.