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I have promised to write an article about monetary explanations for the Great Depression for the Danish libertarian magazine Libertas (in Danish). The deadline was yesterday. It should be easy to write it because it is about stuff that I am very familiar with. Friedman's and Schwartz's "Monetary History", Clark Warburton's early monetarist writings on the Great Depression. Cassel's and Hawtrey's account of the (insane) French central bank's excessive gold demand and how that caused gold prices to spike and effective lead to an tigthening of global monetary conditions. This explanation has of course been picked up by my Market Monetarists friends - Scott Sumner (in his excellent, but unpublished book on the Great Depression), Clark Johnson's fantastic account of French monetary history in his book "Gold, France and the Great Depression, 1919-1932" and super star economic historian Douglas Irwin.
Recently I have become more positive on the outlook for the European and US economies. It seems like the ECB has finally recognised that it need to ease monetary policy to avoid a deflationary disaster and judging from the development in broad monetary aggregates in the US there are signs that things are also moving in the right direction in the US economy.
George Selgin just send me his new paper on what he has termed Quasi-Commodity Money. George spoke briefly on this topic in his recent presentation at the Italian Free Market think tank the Bruno Leoni Institute. See my comment here on the presentation and my review on a related paper - "L Street – Selgin’s prescription for Money Market reform"
Guest blog: NGDP Targeting is NOT just for Central Banks!
Yesterday, I wrote a post on George Selgin’s latest presentation on monetary reform at the Italian think tank the Bruno Leoni Institute. In his presentation George essentially outlines a tree step strategy for the privatisation of the supply of money.
I have earlier argued that NGDP targeting is a effectively emulating the outcome under a perfect Free Banking system and as such NGDP level targeting can be seen as a privatisation strategy. George Selgin has just endorsed this kind of idea in a presentation at the Italian Free Market think tank the Bruno Leoni Institute. The presentation is available on twitcam.
George Mason University professor Robin Hanson in my view is one of the most thought-provoking and innovative thinkers in the world. I often read Hanson’s blog Overcoming Bias and I always find my own views challenged and even though Hanson’s views often seem outrageous they surely make you think and personally I often conclude that Hanson is right.