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 examines the cost of deflation in the context of Japan's ongoing deflationary episode. The impact of deflation owing to the zero interest rate bound on monetary policy, wage rigidity, redistribution of wealth from debtor to creditor, and inflexibilities in the financial sector are examined. It is seen that the generalized decline in the Japanese price level, however gradual or mild, has substantially exacerbated the economy's adjustment process under already difficult economic conditions.