Central banks earn seignorage by producing money and lending it to banks as interest-bearing loans. With the introduction of European Monetary Union, the seignorage of the national central banks was socialized. As early as 1997 Sinn and Feist pointed out that this amounts to an effective redistribution of wealth between the participant countries, since the income from interest earned by the individual national central banks differs in some cases very substantially from the amounts that the Eurosystem distributes to the national central banks.

Articles in refereed journals

"Eurowinners and Eurolosers: The Distribution of Seignorage Wealth in EMU“ (together with H. Feist), European Journal of Political Economy 13, 1997, pp. 665- 689; (Download, 1.08 MB); CESifo Working Paper No. 134, 1997; NBER Working Paper No. 6072, May 1999.

Academic papers in conference volumes

"Seignorage Wealth in the Eurosystem: Eurowinners and Eurolosers Revisited” (together with H. Feist), in: M. Köthenbürger, H.-W. Sinn und M. Widgren, eds., European Monetary Integration, MIT Press: Cambridge, Mass. 2004, pp. 121-136 (Download, 3 MB); CESifo Working Paper No. 353, November 2000.

Policy Contributions in Journals and Academic Volumes

"The Accidental Redistribution of Seignorage Wealth in the Eurosystem“ (together with H. Feist), CESifo Forum 1, 2000, No. 3, pp. 27-29 (Download, 51 KB).

"Der Euro und der Geldschöpfungsgewinn: Gewinner und Verlierer durch die Währungsunion“ (The Euro and the Seignorage Assets: Winners and Losers in the Monetary Union) (together with H. Feist), ifo Schnelldienst 53, 2000, No. 31, pp. 14-22 (Download, 114 KB).

Ifo Viewpoints

Ifo Viewpoint No. 83: The Thirty Billion Euro Deal: Seignorage of ECB, May 22, 2007.

Ifo Viewpoint No. 19: Double Majority, Dec 5, 2000.