TARGET balances, Bretton Woods, and the Great Depression

Michael Bordo 21 March 2014

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During the Eurozone crisis, an analogy was made between the events in Europe between 2007 and 2012 and the collapse of the Bretton Woods System between 1968 and 1971. There has been a build-up of TARGET liabilities since 2007 by some central banks (notably Greece, Ireland, Portugal, and Spain, or the ‘GIPS’), and of TARGET assets by Germany and others.

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Topics:  Economic history International finance

Tags:  ECB, eurozone, euro, global imbalances, Central Banks, financial crisis, Great Depression, Eurosystem, Eurozone crisis, Bretton Woods, TARGET

Putting the ‘system’ in the international monetary system

Michael Bordo, Angela Redish 20 June 2013

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The Eurozone and Bretton Woods are prime examples of planned international monetary arrangements designed in each case to deal with the perceived flaws of earlier more ‘spontaneous order systems ‘based on domestic monetary institutions (Gallarotti 1995).

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Topics:  Economic history Macroeconomic policy

Tags:  eurozone, monetary policy, Bretton Woods

Making the European Monetary Union

Harold James 17 February 2013

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It is often claimed – especially but not only by US economists – that the travails of the euro show that it is impossible to have a monetary union in the absence of a political union, and that Europe is necessarily embarking on a US-style experiment in federalism. Thomas Sargent used his Nobel Prize speech to urge Europeans to follow the model of Alexander Hamilton (2011). Likewise, Paul de Grauwe recently stated the case quite simply: “The euro is a currency without a country. To make it sustainable a European country has to be created” (2012).

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Topics:  Economic history EU institutions

Tags:  Eurozone crisis, Bretton Woods, German surplus

A new IMF reserve currency without the problems of the substitution account – The creation of Special Transaction Rights

Martin Skala 20 April 2011

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In the wake of the global financial crisis, the discontent with the current international monetary system lingers on (see for example Vines 2010). But is there an alternative given the decades-old discussions about gold, Bretton Woods Systems, Bancor, and Special Drawing Rights (SDRs)? Yes, there is.

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Topics:  Global crisis International finance International trade

Tags:  IMF, Special drawing rights, International Monetary System, Special Transaction Rights, Bretton Woods