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Assignment: 1
To answer these questions, go to the book ” The Mystery of money ” written by MURRAY N. ROTHBARD SECOND
EDITION. From page 1 to page 13.
First Question: what is the importance of money?
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Second Question: what is BATER? what is its problems?
o
o
Barter is
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The problems of Barter are:
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3. ?????????????????????????????????..
Third Question: what are THE PROPER QUALITIES OF MONEY?
1.
2.
3.
4.
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Four Question: read page 8 to 13 ” money unit” and summarize them.
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The answers must be by handwriting and on this paper sheet.
Otherwise, it will be deducted one marks
All homework must upload on blackboard, otherwise, not accepted.
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The answers must be by handwriting and on this paper sheet.
Otherwise, it will be deducted one marks
All homework must upload on blackboard, otherwise, not accepted.
Front Matter.qxp
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Page i
The Mystery
of BANKING
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Page ii
The Ludwig von Mises Institute thanks
Mr. Douglas E. French and Ms. Deanna Forbush
for their magnificent sponsorship
of the publication of this book.
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The Mystery
of BANKING
MURRAY N. ROTHBARD
SECOND EDITION
Ludwig von Mises Institute
Auburn, Alabama
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Page iv
Copyright ? 2008 by the Ludwig von Mises Institute
All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced in any
manner whatsoever without written permission except in the case
of reprints in the context of reviews.
For information write the Ludwig von Mises Institute, 518 West
Magnolia Avenue, Auburn, Alabama 36832. Mises.org.
ISBN: 978-1-933550-28-2
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Page v
To Thomas Jefferson,
Charles Holt Campbell,
Ludwig von Mises
Champions of Hard Money
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CONTENTS
Preface by Douglas E. French . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . xi
Foreword by Joseph T. Salerno . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . xv
I. Money: Its Importance and Origins. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1
1.
2.
3.
4.
The Importance of Money . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1
How Money Begins . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
The Proper Qualities of Money . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
The Money Unit . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8
II. What Determines Prices: Supply and Demand . . . . . . . . 15
III. Money and Overall Prices . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29
1.
2.
The Supply and Demand for Money and Overall
Prices . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29
Why Overall Prices Change . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35
IV. The Supply of Money . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43
1.
2.
3.
4.
What Should the Supply of Money Be? . . . . . . . . . . . . 44
The Supply of Gold and the Counterfeiting Process . . 47
Government Paper Money . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51
The Origins of Government Paper Money . . . . . . . . . 55
vii
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The Mystery of Banking
V. The Demand for Money . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 59
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
The Supply of Goods and Services . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 59
Frequency of Payment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 60
Clearing Systems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 63
Confidence in the Money . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 65
Inflationary or Deflationary Expectations . . . . . . . . . . 66
VI. Loan Banking . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 75
VII. Deposit Banking . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 85
1.
2.
3.
4.
Warehouse Receipts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 85
Deposit Banking and Embezzlement . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 90
Fractional Reserve Banking . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 94
Bank Notes and Deposits . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 104
VIII. Free Banking and the Limits on
Bank Credit Inflation. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 111
IX. Central Banking: Removing the Limits . . . . . . . . . . . . . 125
X. Central Banking: Determining Total Reserves . . . . . . . . 141
1.
2.
3.
4.
The Demand for Cash . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 141
The Demand for Gold . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 148
Loans to the Banks. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 149
Open Market Operations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 153
XI. Central Banking: The Process of Bank
Credit Expansion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 161
1.
2.
Expansion from Bank to Bank . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 161
The Central Bank and the Treasury . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 170
XII. The Origins of Central Banking. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 177
1.
2.
3.
The Bank of England . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 177
Free Banking in Scotland . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 183
The Peelite Crackdown, 1844?1845 . . . . . . . . . . . . . 186
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ix
XIII. Central Banking in the United States I: The Origins. . 191
1.
2.
The Bank of North America and the First
Bank of the United States. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 191
The Second Bank of the United States . . . . . . . . . . . . 198
XIV. Central Banking in the United States II:
The 1820s to the Civil War . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 207
1.
2.
The Jacksonian Movement and the Bank War . . . . . . 207
Decentralized Banking from the 1830s to the
Civil War . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 214
XV. Central Banking in the United States III: The National
Banking System . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 219
1.
2.
The Civil War and the National Banking System . . . . 219
The National Banking Era and the Origins
of the Federal Reserve System . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 229
XVI. Central Banking in the United States IV:
The Federal Reserve System . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 235
1.
2.
The Inflationary Structure of the Fed . . . . . . . . . . . . 235
The Inflationary Policies of the Fed . . . . . . . . . . . . . 241
XVII. Conclusion: The Present Banking
Situation and What to Do About It . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 247
1.
2.
3.
The Road to the Present . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 247
The Present Money Supply . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 252
How to Return to Sound Money . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 261
Appendix: The Myth of Free Banking in Scotland . . . . . . . 269
Index . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 293
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PREFACE
A
lthough first published 25 years ago, Murray Rothbard?s
The Mystery of Banking continues to be the only book that
clearly and concisely explains the modern fractional
reserve banking system, its origins, and its devastating effects on
the lives of every man, woman, and child. It is especially appropriate in a year that will see; a surge in bank failures, central
banks around the globe bailing out failed commercial and investment banks, double-digit inflation rates in many parts of the
world and hyperinflation completely destroying Zimbabwe?s
economy, that a new edition of Rothbard?s classic work be republished and made available through the efforts of Lew Rockwell
and the staff at the Ludwig von Mises Institute at an obtainable
price for students and laymen interested in the vagaries of banking and how inflation and business cycles are created.
In the absence of central-bank intervention, the current financial meltdown could be a healthy check on the inflation of the
banking system as Rothbard points out in his scathing review of
Lawrence H. White?s Free Banking in Britain: Theory, Experience,
and Debate, 1800?1845 that first appeared in The Review of Austrian Economics and is included as a part of this new edition to
correct Rothbard?s initial support of White?s work in the first edition. There have been virtually no bank failures in the United
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States since the early 1990s and as Rothbard surmised during that
period where there was ?an absence of failure? that ?inflation of
money and credit [was] all the more rampant.? Indeed, from January 1990 to April 2008, the United States M-2 money supply
more than doubled from $3.2 trillion to $7.7 trillion. Bankers
were living it up, ?at the expense of society and the economy faring worse? (Rothbard?s emphasis).
Although ostensibly it is dodgy real estate loans that are bringing the banks down this year, in the seminal book that you hold,
Rothbard shows that it is really the fraudulent nature of fractionalized banking that is the real culprit for the bankers? demise.
But central bankers will never learn. ?We should not have a
system that?s this fragile, that causes this much risk to the economy,? New York Federal Reserve President Tim Geithner said
after engineering J.P. Morgan?s bailout of the failed Bear Stearns
investment bank in the first quarter of 2008 with the help of the
central bank. Of course the thought of dismantling his employer,
the government leaving the counterfeiting business, and a return
to using the market?s money?gold?didn?t occur to him. More
government regulation in which ?the basic rules of the game
establish stronger incentives for building more robust shock
absorbers,? is what he prescribed.
Surely Murray is somewhere laughing.
My introduction to The Mystery of Banking came in 1992 as
I was finishing my thesis at UNLV under Murray?s direction. I
found the book in the university library and couldn?t put it down.
The book was long out of print by that time and being prior to
the start of Amazon.com and other online used book searches, I
was unable to find a copy of the book for purchase. Thus, I fed
dimes into the library copier one Saturday afternoon and made
myself a copy. When the online searches became available I
waited patiently and bought two copies when they surfaced, paying many times the original $19.95 retail price (as I write this
AbeBooks.com has three copies for sale ranging from $199 to
$225, and Bauman Rare Books recently sold a signed first edition
for $650).
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When I discovered Rothbard?s great work I had been a banker
for six years, but like most people working in banking, I had no
clear understanding of the industry. It is not knowledge that is
taught on the job. Murray may have referred to me as ?the efficient banker,? but he was the one who knew the evil implications
of the modern fractionalized banking system: ?the pernicious and
inflationary domination of the State.?
DOUGLAS E. FRENCH
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA
JUNE 2008
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FOREWORD
L
ong out of print, The Mystery of Banking is perhaps the
least appreciated work among Murray Rothbard?s prodigious body of output. This is a shame because it is a model
of how to apply sound economic theory, dispassionately and
objectively, to the origins and development of real-world institutions and to assess their consequences. It is ?institutional economics? at its best. In this book, the institution under scrutiny is central banking as historically embodied in the Federal Reserve
System?the ?Fed? for short?the central bank of the United
States.
The Fed has long been taken for granted in American life and,
since the mid-1980s until very recently, had even come to be venerated. Economists, financial experts, corporate CEOs, Wall
Street bankers, media pundits, and even the small business owners and investors on Main Street began to speak or write about
the Fed in awed and reverential terms. Fed Chairmen Paul Volcker and especially his successor Alan Greenspan achieved mythic
stature during this period and were the subjects of a blizzard of
fawning media stories and biographies. With the bursting of the
high-tech bubble in the late 1990s, the image of the Fed as the deft
and all-seeing helmsman of the economy began to tarnish. But it
was the completely unforeseen eruption of the wave of sub-prime
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mortgage defaults in the middle of this decade, followed by the
Fed?s panicky bailout of major financial institutions and the onset
of incipient stagflation, that has profoundly shaken the widespread confidence in the wisdom and competence of the Fed.
Never was the time more propitious for the radical and penetrating critique of the Fed and fractional-reserve banking that Rothbard offers in this volume.
Before taking a closer look at the book?s contents and contributions, a brief account of its ill-fated publication history is in
order. It was originally published in 1983 by a short-lived and
eclectic publishing house, Richardson & Snyder, which also published around the same time God?s Broker, the controversial book
on the life of Pope John Paul II by Antoni Gronowicz. The latter
book was soon withdrawn, which led to the dissolution of the
company. A little later, the successor company, Richardson &
Steirman, published the highly touted A Time for Peace by Mikhail
Gorbachev, then premier of the U.S.S.R. This publishing coup,
however, did not prevent this firm from also winding up its affairs
in short order, as it seems to have disappeared after 1988.
In addition to its untimely status as an orphan book, there
were a number of other factors that stunted the circulation of The
Mystery of Banking. First, several reviewers of the original edition
pointedly noted the lax, or nonexistent, copy editing and inferior
production standards that disfigured its appearance. Second, in an
important sense, the book was published ?before its time.? In
1983, its year of publication, the efforts of the Volcker Fed to rein
in the double-digit price inflation of the late 1970s had just begun
to show success. Price inflation was to remain at or below 5 percent for the rest of the decade. During the 1990s, inflation, as
measured by the Consumer Price Index, declined even further
and hovered between 2 and 3 percent. This led the Greenspan
Fed and most professional monetary economists to triumphantly
declare victory over the inflation foe and even to raise the possibility of a return of the deflation bogey.
Despite the adverse circumstances surrounding its publication, however, The Mystery of Banking has gone on to become a
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true underground classic. At the time of this writing, four used
copies are for sale on Amazon.com for between $124.50 and
$256.47. These prices are many times higher than the pennies
asked for standard money-and-banking textbooks published in
the 1980s and even exceed the wildly inflated prices of the latest
editions of these textbooks that are extracted from captive audiences of college students. Such price discrepancies are a good
indication that Rothbard?s book is very different?in content,
style, and organization?from standard treatments of the subject.
Rothbard?s book is targeted at a readership actively interested
in learning about the subject and not at indifferent students
slouching in the 500-seat amphitheatres of our ?research? universities. While it is therefore written in Rothbard?s characteristically
sparkling prose it does not shy away from a rigorous presentation
of the basic theoretical principles that govern the operation of the
monetary system. Indeed the book is peppered with diagrams,
charts, and tables aplenty?and even a simple equation or two.
But before you run for the hills, you should know that it is not a
?textbook? in the conventional sense.
Conventional money-and-banking textbooks confront the
hapless reader with a jumble of dumbed-down mainstream theories and models. Some of these have been discredited and most
bear very little systematic relationship to one another or are in
actual conflict. The Quantity Theory, in both its ?classical? and
monetarist versions, Keynes?s liquidity preference theory of interest, the New Keynesian Aggregate Supply curve, the expectationsaugmented Phillips curve?one after another, all make their dreary
appearance on the scene. Worse yet, this theoretical hodgepodge
is generally set out in the last four or five chapters of the textbook
and is usually preceded by a bland recitation of random technical
details and historical facts about monetary and financial institutions. Unfortunately, the befuddled reader cannot make heads or
tails out of these facts without the guidance of a coherent theory.
For the privilege of being bewildered, misled, and eventually
bored to tears by this indigestible intellectual stew, students get to
pay $100 or more for the textbook.
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Rothbard will have none of this shabby and disrespectful
treatment of his reader and of his science that is meted out by the
typical textbook author. In sharp contrast, he begins by first
clearly presenting the fundamental principles or ?laws? that govern money and monetary institutions. These universal and
immutable laws form a fully integrated system of sound monetary
theory that has been painstakingly elaborated over the course of
centuries by scores of writers and economists extending back at
least to the sixteenth-century Spanish Scholastics of the School of
Salamanca. As the leading authority in this tradition in the latter
half of the twentieth century, Rothbard expounds its core principles in a logical, step-by-step manner, using plain and lucid prose
and avoiding extraneous details. He supplements his verbal-logical analysis with graphs and charts to effectively illustrate the
operation of these principles in various institutional contexts.
It is noteworthy that, despite the fact that this book was written twenty-five years ago, the theory Rothbard presents is up to
date. One reason is that the advancement of knowledge in nonexperimental or ?aprioristic? sciences like economic theory, logic,
and mathematics proceeds steadily but slowly. In the case of
sound monetary theory, many of its fundamental principles had
been firmly established during the nineteenth century. In the German edition of The Theory of Money and Credit published in
1912, Ludwig von Mises, Rothbard?s mentor, integrated these
principles with value and price theory to formulate the modern
theory of money and prices. Rothbard elaborated upon and
advanced Mises?s theoretical system. Thus the second reason that
the monetary theory presented in the book remains fresh and relevant is that Rothbard himself was the leading monetary economist in the sound money tradition in the second half of the twentieth century, contributing many of the building blocks to the
theoretical structure that he lays out. These include: formulating
the proper criteria for calculating the money supply in a fractionalreserve banking system; identifying the various components of the
demand for money; refining and consistently applying the supplyand-demand apparatus to analyzing the value of money; drawing
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a categorical distinction between deposit banking and loan banking; providing the first logical and coherent explanation of how
fiat money came into being and displaced commodity money as a
result of a series of political interventions. All these innovations
and more were products of Rothbard?s creative genius, and many
of his theoretical breakthroughs have not yet been adequately recognized by contemporary monetary theorists, even of the Austrian School.
Rothbard?s presentation of the basic principles of money-andbanking theory in the first eleven chapters of the book guides the
reader in unraveling the mystery of how the central bank operates
to create money through the fractional-reserve banking system
and how this leads to inflation of the money supply and a rise in
overall prices in the economy. But he does not stop there. In the
subsequent five chapters he resolves the historical mystery of how
an inherently inflationary institution like central banking, which
is destructive of the value of money and, in the extreme case of
hyperinflation, of money itself, came into being and was accepted
as essential to the operation of the market economy.
As in the case of his exposition of the theory, Rothbard?s
treatment of the history of the Fed is fundamentally at odds with
that found in standard textbooks. In the latter, the history is shallow and episodic. It is taken for granted that the Fed, like all central banks, was originally designed as an institution whose goal
was to promote the public interest by operating as a ?lender of
last resort,? providing ?liquidity? to troubled banks during times
of financial turbulence to prevent a collapse of the financial system. Later the Fed was given a second mandate, to maintain ?stability of the price level,? a policy which was supposed to rid the
economy of business cycles and therefore to preclude prolonged
periods of recession and unemployment. Thus strewn throughout
a typical textbook one will find accounts of how the Fed handled?usually, although not always, in an enlightened manner?
various ?shocks? to the monetary and financial system. Culpability for such shocks is almost invariably attributed to the unruly
propensities or irrational expectations of business investors,
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consumers, or wage-earners. Even in the exceptional instances,
such as the Great Depression, when inept Fed policy is blamed for
making matters worse, the Fed?s errors are ascribed to not yet
having learned how to properly wield the ?tools of monetary policy,? the euphemism used to describe the various techniques the
Fed uses in exercising its legal monopoly of counterfeiting money.
Each new crisis, however, stimulates the public-spirited policymakers at the Fed by a trial-and-error process to eventually converge on the optimal monetary policy, which was supposedly hit
upon in the heyday of the Greenspan Fed during 1990s.
Rothbard rejects such a superficial and na?ve account of the
Fed?s origins and bolstering of the banking system development.
Instead, he deftly uses sound monetary theory to beam a penetrating light through the thick fog of carefully cultivated myths that
surround the operation of the Fed. Rather than recounting the
Fed?s response to isolated crises, he blends economic theory with
historical insight to reveal the pecuniary and ideological motives
of the specific individuals who played key roles in establishing,
molding, and operating the Fed. Needless to say, Rothbard does
not blithely accept the almost universal view that the Fed is the
outcome of a public-spirited response to shocks and failures
caused by unruly market forces. Rather he asks, and then answers,
the incisive, and always disturbing, question, ?Cui bono?? (?To
whose benefit??). In other words, which particular individuals
and groups stood to benefit from the Fed?s creation and its specific policies? In answering this question, Rothbard fearlessly
names names and delves into the covert motives and goals of
those named.
This constitutes yet another, and possibly the most important,
reason why Rothbard?s book had been ignored: for it is forbidden
to even pose the question of ?who benefits? with respect to the
Fed and its legal monopoly of the money supply, lest one be
smeared and marginalized as a ?conspiracy theorist.? Strangely,
when a similar question is asked regarding the imposition of tariffs or government regulations of one sort or another, no one
seems to bat an eye, and free-market economists even delight in
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and win plaudits for uncovering such ?rent-seekers? in their popular and academic publications. Thus economists of the Chicago
and Public Choice Schools have explained the origins and policies
of Federal regulatory agencies such as the ICC, CAB, FDA, FTC,
FCC, etc., as powerfully shaped by the interests of the industries
that they regulated. Yet these same economists squirm in discomfort and seek a quick escape when confronted with the question
of why this analysis does not apply to the Fed. Indeed, Rothbard
does no more than portray the Fed as a cartelizing device that limits entry into and regulates competition within the lucrative fractional-reserve banking industry and stands ready to bail it out,
thus guaranteeing its profits and socializing its losses. Rothbard
further demonstrates, that not only bankers, but also incumbent
politicians and their favored constituencies and special interest
groups benefit from the Fed?s power to create money at will. This
power is routinely used in the service of vote-seeking politicians
to surreptitiously tax money holders to promote the interests of
groups that gain from artificially cheap interest rates and direct
government subsidies. These beneficiaries include, among others,
Wall Street financial institutions, manufacturing firms that produce capital goods, the military-industrial complex, the construction and auto industries, and labor unions.
With the U.S. housing crisis metamorphosing into a fullblown financial crisis in the U.S. and Europe and the specter of a
global stagflation looming larger every day, the Fed?s credibility
and reputation is evaporating with the value of the U.S. dollar.
The time is finally ripe to publish this new edition of the book
that asked the forbidden question about the Fed and fractionalreserve banking when it was first published twenty-five years ago.
JOSEPH T. SALERNO
PACE UNIVERSITY
JULY 2008
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Chapter One.qxp
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Page 1
I.
MONEY: ITS IMPORTANCE
AND ORIGINS
1. THE IMPORTANCE
T
OF
MONEY
oday, money supply figures pervade the financial press.
Every Friday, investors breathlessly watch for the latest
money figures, and Wall Street often reacts at the opening
on the following Monday. If the money supply has gone up
sharply, interest rates may or may not move upward. The press is
filled with ominous forecasts of Federal Reserve actions, or of
regulations of banks and other financial institutions.
This close attention to the money supply is rather new. Until
the 1970s, over the many decades of the Keynesian Era, talk of
money and bank credit had dropped out of the financial pages.
Rather, they emphasized the GNP and government?s fiscal policy,
expenditures, revenues, and deficits. Banks and the money supply
were generally ignored. Yet after decades of chronic and accelerating inflation?which the Keynesians could not begin to cure?
and after many bouts of ?inflationary recession,? it became obvious
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The Mystery of Banking
to all?even to Keynesians?that something was awry. The money
supply therefore became a major object of concern.
But the average person may be confused by so many definitions of the money supply. What are all the Ms about, from M1A and M1-B up to M-8? Which is the true money supply figure,
if any single one can be? And perhaps most important of all, why
are bank deposits included in all the various Ms as a crucial and
dominant part of the money supply? Everyone knows that paper
dollars, issued nowadays exclusively by the Federal Reserve Banks
and imprinted with the words ?this note is legal tender for all
debts, public and private? constitute money. But why are checking accounts money, and where do they come from? Don?t they
have to be redeemed in cash on demand? So why are checking
deposits considered money, and not just the paper dollars backing
them?
One confusing implication of including checking deposits as a
part of the money supply is that banks create money, that they are,
in a sense, money-creating factories. But don?t banks simply channel the savings we lend to them and relend them to productive
investors or to borrowing consumers? Yet, if banks take our savings and lend them out, how can they create money? How can
their liabilities become part of the money supply?
There is no reason for the layman to feel frustrated if he can?t
find coherence in all this. The best classical economists fought
among themselves throughout the nineteenth century over
whether or in what sense private bank notes (now illegal) or
deposits should or should not be part of the money supply. Most
economists, in fact, landed on what we now see to be the wrong
side of the question. Economists in Britain, the great center of
economic thought during the nineteenth century, were particularly at sea on this issue. The eminent David Ricardo and his successors in the Currency School, lost a great chance to establish
truly hard money in England because they never grasped the fact
that bank deposits are part of the supply of money. Oddly
enough, it was in the United States, then considered a backwater
of economic theory, that economists first insisted that bank
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Money: Its Importance and Origins
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deposits, like bank notes, were part of the money supply. Condy
Raguet, of Philadelphia, first made this point in 1820. But English economists of the day paid scant attention to their American
colleagues.
2. HOW MONEY BEGINS
Before examining what money is, we must deal with the
importance of money, and, before we can do that, we have to
understand how money arose. As Ludwig von Mises conclusively
demonstrated in 1912, money does not and cannot originate by
order of the State or by some sort of social contract agreed upon
by all citizens; it must always originate in the processes of the free
market.
Before coinage, there was barter. Goods were produced by
those who were good at it, and their surpluses were exchanged
for the products of others. Every product had its barter price in
terms of all other products, and every person gained by exchanging something he needed less for a product he needed more. The
voluntary market economy became a latticework of mutually beneficial exchanges.
In barter, there were severe limitations on the scope of
exchange and therefore on production. In the first place, in order
to buy something he wanted, each person had to find a seller who
wanted precisely what he had available in exchange. In short, if
an egg dealer wanted to buy a pair of shoes, he h

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