Tag Archives: central banking

Ben Bernanke, the Fed and the Tea Party

Ben Bernanke is not a Tea Party sort of person. An academic appointed as Chair of the US Federal Reserve (“the Fed”) by a Republican President (Bush II) and re-appointed by a Democrat President (Obama) who helped organise the bailout of Wall St in response to the Global Financial Crisis (GFC), he is the epitome of […]

The surreal glitter of gold

Blogging at Free Banking, Kurt Schuler wants us to have a debate about gold (as in the gold standard). Let’s not. I will concede that there is, as he states, much superficial dismissal of the utility of a adopting a gold standard. It is also true understanding the dynamics of gold, silver and bimetallist standards are […]

Goals, rules and time-horizons

A perennial discussion in monetary policy is rules versus discretion. Should the central bank be constrained to follow a policy rule or should it have policy discretion? I find this debate generally muddled both in the means-versus-ends question and what is the proper underlying concern. Is the concern bad policy or unclear policy? With constraining […]

Broken by the fix

What do the goldzone Great Depression (1929-3?) and the Eurozone Great Recession (2008-?) have in common? They were both created by European central banks with the US Federal Reserve (the Fed) as accessory during and after the fact. (Yes, the monetary shock which set off the Great Recession started in Europe though the responsibility of the […]

Easy Guide to Monetary Policy

What money is We use money to transact and the money we use is fiat money, money backed only by government decree. In economic terms, money is a transaction good and all that fiat money is, is a transaction good; the only point in holding such money is to be able to engage in transactions—its expected swap […]

Don’t mention the A-word

The Eurozone, the US, Japan and the UK are all suffering prolonged economic stagnation. [You can see how serious it is in the US here.] It is sensible to suggest that they are doing something (or perhaps many things) wrong and need to change policy. What is not sensible is ignoring a developed world economy […]