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Hugh Rockoff on free banking history (podcast)

I interviewed Prof. Hugh Rockoff of Rutgers University for the latest installment of the Econ Journal Watch Audio podcast. We chat about his research on episodes of lightly regulated banking, and his take on others' research. Along the way we discuss Milton Friedman's views on free banking, and the recent banking debacle in Cyprus.
Listen or download here.


  1. Very interesting discussion. Thanks.

    Free banking history is all over the place – with the local flavor of the political economy at home – and has little relevance to the type of integrated banking-financial megastructure of today.
    So, not much guidance for moving forward from all the history.

    Second, free-marketeer Friedman maintained favor, throughout the period discussed here, for an actual government presence for fiat money creation/issuance – a level playing field that might prevent a need for uber-regulation.
    Both his Fiscal and Monetary Framework and his Program for Monetary Stability called for money by law, rather than markets.

    So, today, given the recent history, why are the free-bankers not complicit with the notion of government money creation? IOW, if you want free-banking to be on the table, then the notion of separation of money from banking NEEDs to be in the air.

    The Kucinich Bill does what Friedman called for.

    Today, the advancement of a free market in banking can only happen when the TBTF paradigm is off the table. Thus, the money-banking separation.
    The money system is a common.
    Banking is for free marketeers.

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