DEFINITION of 'Reflation'

A fiscal or monetary policy, designed to expand a country's output and curb the effects of deflation. Reflation policies can include reducing taxes, changing the money supply and lowering interest rates.

The term "reflation" is also used to describe the first phase of economic recovery after a period of contraction.


Reflation policy has been used by American governments, to try and restart failed business expansions since the early 1600s. Although almost every government tries in some form or another to avoid the collapse of an economy after a recent boom, none have ever succeeded in being able to avoid the contraction phase of the business cycle. Many academics actually believe government agitation only delays the recovery and worsens the effects.

  1. Inflation

    The rate at which the general level of prices for goods and services ...
  2. Consumer Price Index - CPI

    A measure that examines the weighted average of prices of a basket ...
  3. Producer Price Index - PPI

    A family of indexes that measures the average change in selling ...
  4. Deflation

    A general decline in prices, often caused by a reduction in the ...
  5. Hyperinflation

    Extremely rapid or out of control inflation. There is no precise ...
  6. Federal Reserve Board - FRB

    The governing body of the Federal Reserve System. The seven members ...
Related Articles
  1. Economics

    What Is Fiscal Policy?

    Learn how governments adjust taxes and spending to moderate the economy.
  2. Economics

    Understanding Supply-Side Economics

    Does the amount of goods and services produced set the pace for economic growth? Here are the arguments.
  3. Personal Finance

    How The U.S. Government Formulates Monetary Policy

    Learn about the tools the Fed uses to influence interest rates and general economic conditions.
  4. Options & Futures

    Explaining The World Through Macroeconomic Analysis

    From unemployment and inflation to government policy, learn what macroeconomics measures and how it affects everyone.
  5. Economics

    The Importance Of Inflation And GDP

    Learn the underlying theories behind these concepts and what they can mean for your portfolio.
  6. Fundamental Analysis

    Emerging Markets: Analyzing Colombia's GDP

    With a backdrop of armed rebels and drug cartels, the journey for the Colombian economy has been anything but easy.
  7. Investing

    How to Win More by Losing Less in Today’s Markets

    The further you fall, the harder it is to climb back up. It’s a universal truth that is painfully apparent in the investing world.
  8. Economics

    Is the U.S. Economy Ready for Liftoff?

    The Fed continues to delay normalizing rates, citing inflation concerns and “global economic and financial developments” in explaining its rationale.
  9. Economics

    What's Economic Capital?

    While regulatory and economic capital use some of the same measurements of risk to determine how much capital a firm should hold in reserve, economic capital uses more realistic measures.
  10. Economics

    What is Economic Rent?

    Economic rent typically occurs when a product, service or property is in short supply, but demand is high.
  1. Who decides to print money in Canada?

    In Canada, new money comes from two places: the Bank of Canada (BOC) and chartered banks such as the Toronto Dominion Bank ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. Who decides when to print money in India?

    The Reserve Bank of India, or RBI, manages currency in India. The bank's additional responsibilities include regulating the ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. Is Japan an emerging market economy?

    Japan is not an emerging market economy. Emerging market economies are characterized by low per capita incomes, poor infrastructure ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. How is the Federal Reserve audited?

    Contrary to conventional wisdom, the Federal Reserve is extensively audited. Politicians on the left and right of a populist ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. Who decides when to print money in the US?

    The U.S. Treasury decides to print money in the United States as it owns and operates printing presses. However, the Federal ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. When has the United States run its largest trade deficits?

    In macroeconomics, balance of trade is one of the leading economic metrics that determines the trading relationship of a ... Read Full Answer >>

You May Also Like

Hot Definitions
  1. Gross Profit

    A company's total revenue (equivalent to total sales) minus the cost of goods sold. Gross profit is the profit a company ...
  2. Revenue

    The amount of money that a company actually receives during a specific period, including discounts and deductions for returned ...
  3. Normal Profit

    An economic condition occurring when the difference between a firm’s total revenue and total cost is equal to zero.
  4. Operating Cost

    Expenses associated with the maintenance and administration of a business on a day-to-day basis.
  5. Cost Of Funds

    The interest rate paid by financial institutions for the funds that they deploy in their business. The cost of funds is one ...
  6. Cost Accounting

    A type of accounting process that aims to capture a company's costs of production by assessing the input costs of each step ...
Trading Center
You are using adblocking software

Want access to all of Investopedia? Add us to your “whitelist”
so you'll never miss a feature!