cracking dollar

In a thought-provoking article published by the IMF in April, Ruchir Agarwal and Miles Kimball argue for moving away from a “paper money standard” and toward an "electronic money standard." The promised benefits include shorter recessions and lower average inflation. These benefits are said to result from…

Twice now,  on this forum back in 2013, and on Twitter more recently (see here and here), I've taken Yale economics professor Gary Gorton's publications to task for misrepresenting the historical record of private currency systems. In particular, I've criticized him for claiming, on the basis of evidence…

Bank note

I've often drawn attention here to the virtues of the Canadian banking system, especially as it was between the passage of Canada's first Bank Act in 1871 and the establishment of the Bank of Canada in 1935. After the Scottish banking system that flourished between 1716 and…

Bitcoin

Many economists acknowledge that ordinary private goods and services need to “pass the market test”—generate revenue in excess of expenses—to show that consumers’ benefits (revealed by a willingness to pay) exceed producers’ outlays. But they make an exception when it comes to monetary instruments and payment systems….