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Free Banking and Monetary Reform

3.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0521022514
ISBN-10: 0521022517
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Editorial Reviews


"For nearly a century, monetary theorists have been searching for their Holy Grail: a way to figure just the right amount of money to keep the economy on an even keel. Now two more pilgrim-scholars, David Glasner, an economist at the Federal Trade Commission, and Earl Thompson, a professor at the University of California at Los Angeles, are hot on the trail. It is too early to say whether their clever variation on a long forgotten proposal of the great pre-Keynsian economist, Irving Fisher, will stand up to critical scrutiny. But the idea, described in...readable detail in Mr. Glasner's new book, Free Banking and Monetary Reform should intrigue anyone who thinks that even the Federal Reserve Board can make mistakes." Peter Passell, The New York Times

"Glasner provides an excellent review of monetary history, insightful discussions of such monetary innovations as the development of the Eurocurrency market and money market mutual funds, and incisive analyses of recent monetary problems like the deregulation of savings and loan associations and the insurance of bank deposits. This timely and lucid book on such a controversial issue deserves a wide audience." Choice

"...important new book..." Lawrence H. White, Journal of Monetary Economics

Book Description

The power of the state to issue currency and control the monetary system is so entrenched, and the presumption among economists that money must be supplied monopolistically by a central authority is so widespread, that the notion that money could be supplied competitively has rarely been taken seriously.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 296 pages
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press (November 10, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0521022517
  • ISBN-13: 978-0521022514
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.7 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,900,636 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

By Benjamin M. Cole on August 30, 2011
Format: Paperback
Nice book. Recently, gold-buts are braying about the yellow metal, unaware that preserving the value of a Ben Franklin in monetary formaldehyde is poison on a modern economy. Especially one that has undergone a real estate bust.

Japan has tried tight money for 20 years--the yen has appreciated against all other currencies and in Japan there is deflation--but Japan's economy has been floundering against the roaring Chinese and Korean economies (where monetary growth is practiced). Japan is on the verge of becoming a backwater nation, its investors dispirited, and its population failing to reproduce. Property values have fallen 80 percent in the last 20 years and are still falling, as the Bank of Japan sallies forth against inflation. The Nikkei Dow has lost 75 percent.

Ben Bernanke should listen to Milton Friedman and print more money.
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Format: Paperback
Glasner wrote a 1995 UCLA working paper talking about how stupid it was for the U.S. to stay on the gold standard during the depression. He argued that deflation occurred due to Smoot-Hawley, making it hard for Germany to repay its WWI debts in trade, and thus had to use gold. He then postulated that the depression could have been avoided had the US moved off the gold exchange standard. Of course, repudiating gold so soon after setting up the gold exchange standard in the Genoa conference of 1923 would have revealed the U.S. to be completely without scruples with regard to its own currency. Glasner could have equally argued for Germany to repudiate its war debts, but he did not. Evidently Glasner feels world trade operates by creditors inflating their currency, so that if debtor's debt is denominating in the creditors' currency it makes it easier to pay it off. He misses the point that the gold standard, while exacting harsh discipline on ill-advised debtors, stablizes the belief in the value of the currency for all participants. Glasner is searching for the painless correction, and he does so by sticking his hand in your pocket.
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