Oct. 21 (Bloomberg) — Gordon Kerr, consultant at Cobden Partners, talks with Guy Johnson about the potential $13 billion settlement by JPMorgan to end civil claims over its sales of mortgage bonds. He speaks on Bloomberg Television’s “The Pulse.”
I owe a debt of obligation to my fellow Cobdenites for kickstarting a debate about money and banking amongst the UK Austrian community. As a participant in that debate – both on this blog and on the Cobden Centre mailing list – I decided to write up a working paper on the sound money debate. I’m delighted that it has now been published, and those with institutional access can find it here (PDF).
The abstract is:
If you don’t have access, please email me and I’ll be glad to send you a copy.
Readers of The Cobden Centre blog may be interested in the recent report from Kaleidic Economics. It focuses on an analysis of Japan’s “lost decade”, and how this relates to the UK. In particular, it assesses some of the academic literature – especially from the Austrian school perspective – about whether the lost decade is a myth or reality, and what the root causes were.
You can download the report here (PDF).
For readers across the pond, or those tempted to make the journey …
The annual Toronto Austrian Scholars Conference (TASC) of the Ludwig von Mises Institute of Canada will be held at the University of Toronto, November 2-3 (Saturday – Sunday).
TASC seeks papers that seek to improve the understanding of the role of markets in the economy. Submissions should seek to shed light on contemporary issues while being grounded in a praxeological reasoning. Papers are welcome from a variety of fields such as politics, sociology, and psychology, where ever they can bring relevance to economic and financial questions.
Scholars interested in presenting papers, serving as chairs/discussants, or proposing entire panels should submit proposals by Tuesday, October 1, 2013. With all submissions, please include the following information for each participant, including non-attending co-authors:
2. Affiliation (title and institution)
3. E-mail address
4. Telephone number
5. Title of paper(s)
6. Abstract(s) of no more than 100 words
Please ensure that all attachments are either Adobe Acrobat (.pdf) or Word (.doc or .docx) format.
Please note that the conference organisers have to be free to place your paper or panel on any of the conference days. Organisers will entertain specific requests, however, if you prefer to present on either Saturday or Sunday, though no guarantees of such can be made in advance.
The registration fee for faculty members is $225, Independent Scholars $125, Observers $75, and Students $25.
Select papers from the conference will be published as Papers and Proceedings of the conference in the Journal of Prices & Markets, the flagship journal of the Ludwig von Mises Institute of Canada.
Please send your submissions by email only to David Howden at firstname.lastname@example.org (with “TASC 2013” in the subject line of the e-mail).
I campaign constantly against the injustice which is being manufactured by our centrally-planned system of money and bank credit so I am glad that the arguments are going mainstream.
We are in the midst of a great battle between debtors and creditors. Deeply indebted governments are on the side of those in debt. Too many claims on real goods have been created by bank lending so now the central banks are destroying those claims by stealth.
The implications for our society will be profound. I cannot help thinking that the whole enterprise would have already come crashing down if the public could see the tens and hundreds of billions of Pounds – and Dollars and Yen… – as paper in wheelbarrows going to governments’ favoured friends.
Given that the alternative is higher interest rates, sound money and a painful correction, governments and central banks think they are taking the easy way out. We’ll see.
This article was previously published at SteveBaker.info.
Lots of people talk about “The” Quantity Theory of Money and “The” Equation-of-Exchange. The terms have a familiar feel to them, they’re part of the furniture of Economics. On careful examination, that appearance changes. There isn’t really one Equation-of-Exchange, there are many. One reason for this is that different economists have different ideas about what counts as a transaction and should be included. The Quantity Theory is similar, most of the arguments against it criticise only one version. This is why arguments about these things often descend into confusion.
Anthony Evans and I investigated these problems. We looked at Ludwig Von Mises’ monetary theory and compared it to others. We found that Mises was aiming at something quite different to Fisher, Friedman or present-day quantity theorists. Our paper on this has now been published in the Review of Austrian Economics.
For those lucky people who work in Universities with journal access:
For us plebs without here’s a slightly earlier version:
This month’s meeting of the London Mises Circle will take place at the Institute of Economic Affairs on April 25th.
Abhinandan Mallick will give a talk on the Austrian School approach to the theory of value and price in the tradition of Menger and Bohm Bawerk, and its distinctive features in comparison to the dominant neoclassical approach.
He will mainly focus on how the Austrian School approach can genuinely explain and shed light on the process of price formation, and touch briefly on its application to understanding the dynamics of price relations along capital structures.
Abhinandan is a research analyst at IHS, hold Master’s degrees in Theoretical Physics and Economics from the University of Birmingham and Birkbeck College, University of London, and is a former research fellow of the Ludwig von Mises Institute.
Arrive at 6:30 for a 7pm start. Any queries please contact email@example.com
The March meeting of the London Mises Circle will take place at the Institute of Economic Affairs on Thursday 21st March.
We will be having a talk from Robert C B Miller, economist, businessman, and former Senior Fellow of the IEA, on his recent paper for the Adam Smith Institute titled What Would Hayek Do? A discussion will follow.
We will be aiming to get going at 6:30pm with a fairly prompt 8pm finish.
All are welcome. If you have any questions please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
You probably didn’t know there was a Japanese Currrency Museum, did you? Well, neither did I until I found myself stood outside it one Saturday morning. (As you do.) It’s run by the Bank of Japan (i.e. the central bank) and inside there are a large number of displays charting the history of Japan’s money from gold dust to today’s paper-based fiat currency. It’s not a big museum but it’s a damn sight better that the British equivalent.
So what did I learn? Mainly, that Japan’s monetary history is much the same as the UK’s: for most of Japan’s history gold and silver dominated, governments were forever debasing the coinage, paper money came about at almost the same time as it did in Britain and the exchange rate between gold and silver was always causing problems. This was especially true immediately after Japan opened up to the West. A lucrative arbitrage trade developed in which Westerners would sell their silver to the Japanese government and receive far more gold in return than they would at home.
The only real differences with Britain are that many Japanese coins had a hole in the centre to allow them to be threaded together with string (a practice echoed in the modern 5 and 50 yen coins) and that Japanese ingots were a really cool shape.
Indeed that shape is a frequently used banking emblem to this day. The other difference is that the Japanese were quite happy to accept foreign currency, particularly Chinese currency. Japan even had privately minted coins in much the same way Britain had, as George Selgin described in his book Good Money.
One thing I picked up (or at least I think I picked up – the English notices were limited) was to do with the collapse of the Tokugawa Shogunate. The stock history of the birth of modern Japan goes something like this: for 200 years the Shoguns shut Japan off from the rest of the world; in 1853 the US Commodore Perry parked his ships in Tokyo Bay and demanded a trade agreement; the Shogunate resisted change and in 1868 it was abolished and the Emperor restored. Modernisation began.
What I picked up was that well before the arrival of Perry there was a severe debasement of the currency underway. I found this rather surprising given that Japan didn’t have any wars to fight, but they managed it anyway. Could it be that, far from modernisation being the culprit, it was a currency collapse that did for the Shogun?
I received an interesting email recently from a distinguished colleague in Spain. He was looking at the Central Bank of Cuba’s website where they state their monetary policy. He said to me, “you could ask your readers if they can grasp similarities and spot differences (other than that they recognize they are not a market economy) as compared with the monetary policy conducted by the Bank of England or the ECB. I guess that more than one western-world central banker would feel comfy with the Cuban approach.”
Here’s the text: