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Circulation of Private Notes during a Currency Shortage

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  • Xavier Cuadras

Abstract

This paper provides a search theoretical model that captures two phenomena that have characterized several episodes of monetary history: currency shortages and the circulation of privately issued notes. As usual in these models, the media of exchange are determined as part of the equilibrium. We characterize all the different equilibria and specify the conditions under which there is a currency shortage and/or privately issued notes are used as means of payment. There is multiplicity of equilibria for the entire parameter space, but there always exist an equilibrium in which notes circulate, either alone or together with coins. Hence, credit is a self-fulfilling phenomenon that depends on the beliefs of agents about the acceptability and future repayment of notes. The degree of circulation of coins depends on two crucial parameters, the intrinsic utility of holding coins and the extent with which it is possible to find exchange opportunities in the market.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Barcelona Graduate School of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 164.

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Date of creation: Mar 2005
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Handle: RePEc:bge:wpaper:164

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  1. François R. Velde & Warren E. Weber & Randall Wright, 1999. "A Model of Commodity Money, with Applications to Gresham's Law and the Debasement Puzzle," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 2(1), pages 291-323, January.
  2. Redish, Angela, 1984. "Why Was Specie Scarce in Colonial Economies? An Analysis of the Canadian Currency, 1796–1830," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 44(03), pages 713-728, September.
  3. Scott Freeman, 1993. "Clearinghouse banks and banknote over-issue," Research Paper 9326, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.
  4. Bernhardt, Dan, 1989. "Money and Loans," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 56(1), pages 89-100, January.
  5. Neil Wallace & Ruilin Zhou, 1996. "A model of a currency shortage," Working Papers 569, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  6. Yi Jin & Ted Temzelides, 2004. "On the Local Interaction of Money and Credit," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 7(1), pages 143-156, January.
  7. Bullard, James & Smith, Bruce D., 2003. "The value of inside and outside money," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(2), pages 389-417, March.
  8. Ricardo de O. Cavalcanti & Neil Wallace, 1999. "A model of private bank-note issue," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 2(1), pages 104-136, January.
  9. Townsend, Robert M, 1989. "Currency and Credit in a Private Information Economy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(6), pages 1323-44, December.
  10. Williamson, Stephen D, 1999. "Private Money," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 31(3), pages 469-91, August.
  11. Bullard, James & Smith, Bruce D., 2003. "Intermediaries and payments instruments," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 109(2), pages 172-197, April.
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