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Tag Archives: Paul Volcker

The Ikon: the best world money

States cannot create good money. They are interested parties. A good monetary system should discipline states – i.e. hold them to account. A state-run money cannot do that. That is the flaw in proposals such as those made by Positive Money and The International Movement for Monetary Reform. (Let me add, however, that I go…
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‘The Money Trap’ now

The book argued that the crisis was the joint product of  inflation targeting, irresponsible banking and a weak international monetary system. The book tried to show how these were inter-related: First, inflation targeting, which had been a valuable tool in combatting 1970s inflation, had by the 2000s outlived its usefulness as a guide and discipline for…
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William White: Why we need to debate exchange rates

William White, formerly head of monetary and economic affairs at the Bank for International Settlements and now chair of a key OECD committee,  is one of the few mainstream economists willing and eager to keep the debate about exchange rates systems alive. Most of them want to bury it. In a paper published by the…
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G20 fails to act

  People know we haven’t cracked the problem. Anaemic, faltering growth has brought a sense of greater security and well-being only to those in work or those with assets like shares and city property that have floated up on the rising tide of central bank liquidity. Since 2007 vast disparities of wealth have become even…
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Encounters with Paul Volcker and Jacques de Larosière

  This month I have enjoyed wonderful conversations  with three elder statesman of international finance and economic policy – Paul Volcker, Jacques de Larosière and Allan Meltzer. They all agreed on one big thing – much of what has gone wrong is down to the absence of a proper international monetary system. This is a…
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A Debate with Allan Meltzer (Part 1)

Professor Allan Meltzer debates international monetary issues and The Money Trap with Robert Pringle   On 3/14/2014 12:57 PM, Robert Pringle wrote:   Allan, Thinking further about the international monetary system, I now find it difficult to conceive monetary stability being established in one country alone – even if that country is the US. This…
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Mark Carney tries on his new hats

    As predicted in The Money Trap, central banks are in process of ditching inflation targeting as a monetary rule.  Needless to say, this is not how they see it. At the Bank of England, Mark Carney thinks he looks fancy wearing the new hats George Osborne has given him.  He tried them on…
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When international monetary reform will be politically attractive

A common criticism of proposals for reform of the international monetary system is that they are not politically possible. Of course, there are other grounds on which they can be and are criticised – especially when they call for a return to stable exchange rates, a howl goes up that this would sacrifice the domestic…
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Sleeepwalking to destruction

I do not suppose that central bankers like to be compared to witches, but for my money the best account of how the financial crisis came about is in Macbeth. Banquo warns Macbeth to be wary of the witches’ implied promises: And oftentimes, to win us to our harm, The instruments of darkness tell us…
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Thatcher, Volcker, Keynes and the power of ideas

The death of Margaret Thatcher reminds us all of the power of ideas, when allied to guts and leadership, to change the world. She identified one area of national life after another where restrictions and old ways of doing things were holding back innovation and the spirit of enterprise that lay dormant in the British…
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