Hyperinflation

"The fateful errors of popular monetary doctrines which have led astray the monetary policies of almost all governments would hardly have come into existence if many economists had not themselves committed blunders in dealing with monetary issues and did not stubbornly cling to them." —Ludwig von Mises,…

Bretton Woods

August 15, 2021 marks the 50th anniversary of the day President Richard Nixon “closed the gold window,” ending the postwar Bretton Woods international monetary system. It is an appropriate moment to reconsider the internal inconsistencies of the Bretton Woods system. As its contemporary critics understood, Bretton Woods…

A couple months ago, in arguing that “The Fed should give everyone a bank account,” journalist Matt Yglesias cited what he took to be an instructive precedent: “Once upon a time, governments didn’t issue paper currency, and instead banknotes were printed privately by banks. But over time,…

(This editor's note is cross-posted from the  Spring/Summer 2021 edition of the Cato Journal.) In 1996, Cato held its 14th Annual Monetary Conference, “The Future of Money in the Information Age.”  The proceedings, along with additional essays, appeared in a book with the same title in 1997. …