Although I've devoted many essays here to exploding myths about historical private currencies, there's one I've yet to directly challenge. That's the belief that such currencies only thrive in the absence of official alternatives. Otherwise, the argument goes, people would drop private currencies like so many hot…

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…

Populism and the Future of the Fed

The distinguished contributors to Populism and the Future of the Fed examine populist demands to expand the Fed’s mandate and the threat to the demarcation between fiscal and monetary policy.  All the essays, except those by Charles Plosser and me, stem from Cato’s 39th Annual Monetary Conference,…