BPEA | 1976 No. 1

Discussion of Poole and Enzler, Johnson, and Paulus Reports

1976, No. 1

ROBERT HALL noted that the average velocity of money of about five that is observed in the aggregate statistics is wildly inconsistent with the observed behavior of most individuals, suggesting that the commonly used model of money demand seriously misses explaining aggregate money demand. There are apparently large components of money demand that require alternative explanations. James Tobin remarked that business deposits, in particular, cannot be explained by the inventory model of money demand, and thought that compensating balances represented the most promising avenue for improving the explanation. He was not persuaded by Enzler’s dismissal of the compensating-balance argument and noted that in 1975, business loans had fallen for the first time in the history of the series, after rising very persistently at an average annual rate of about 10 percent since 1959. Deposits are probably not held against currently outstanding loans as much as against some weighted average of past and expected loans.