Definition of seigniorage in US English:


(also seignorage)


  • 1Profit made by a government by issuing currency, especially the difference between the face value of coins and their production costs.

    • ‘The United States Joint Economic Committee recently proposed a simple formula for sharing revenues from seigniorage as follows.’
    • ‘First, the issuer of the key currency can collect seigniorage.’
    • ‘If it enters bilateral or multilateral agreements, there would be a likely cost of sharing seigniorage collected on the dollars circulating in the dollarized countries.’
    • ‘Second, nation states use their currency for seigniorage.’
    • ‘I merely point out that in this case the reduction in the benefits of seigniorage would be balanced in a slight boost to US output growth.’
    • ‘My point is that the seigniorage that the US enjoys as a result of the dollar's being the international reserve currency has a cost as well.’
    1. 1.1historical The Crown's right to a percentage on bullion brought to a mint for coining.
    2. 1.2historical A thing claimed by a sovereign or feudal superior as a prerogative.


Late Middle English: from Old French seignorage, from seigneur (see seigneur).