By John F Chown
EMU could be trumpeted because the nice financial scan in financial union, yet as John Chown exhibits during this significant booklet, there were many different examples of economic unions through the years - a few winning, others now not so. during this finished historic review, the writer writes approximately financial unions with an admirable completeness and covers such issues as: the most fulfilling, financial unions in nations and components from Latin the US to The British Empire to Japan and Korea with many in among, the EMU and its coverage ramifications and the CFA Franc area within the former French colonies.
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Additional info for A History of Monetary Unions
Store of value. Dollarisation Official ‘dollarisation’ implies that a foreign currency, but not necessarily the US dollar, becomes the de jure currency of an otherwise independent country. This can be regarded as a way of cutting out the currency board as middleman, and has a similar economic effect, except for ‘seigniorage’, a key point discussed below. The best known example is Panama. Unofficial dollarisation is rather more common: Liberia used the dollar officially from 1944 until 1986 when it adopted its own currency.
Monetary unions 25 Can workers in a relatively depressed country cross frontiers in search of work, relieving labour pressures in ‘boom’ countries? Monetary union is obviously more likely to work if legal barriers or fiscal penalties have first been removed, but even if workers are free to move, will they be willing? The fact that wages are expressed in the same currency both sides of the border obviously helps transparency, but are there language or cultural barriers to movement? If neither of these two mechanisms work, the countries suffering from the shock will have a depressed, and its neighbours an over-heated, economy.
When Hong Kong joined China there was a perceived danger of a run on the currency. A holder of Hong Kong dollar notes had the undoubted right to convert these at the fixed rate into US dollars, and the board held reserves which were more than adequate to meet all claims. However, ‘money supply’ in an advanced economy is dominated by bank deposits, and bank deposits are backed only by a fraction, perhaps 10 per cent, of banknotes or deposits with the central bank. This was not a problem with early currency boards, but has become one in countries which need to restore both an acceptable currency and a recapitalisation of the banking system.
A History of Monetary Unions by John F Chown