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The big problem of large bills: the Bank of Amsterdam and the origins of central banking

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  • Stephen Quinn
  • William Roberds

Abstract

This paper outlines a model of the first true central bank, the Bank of Amsterdam, founded in 1609. Employing a variant of the Freeman (1996) model of money and payments, we first analyze the problematic monetary situation in the Netherlands prior to the founding of the Bank. We then use the model to describe how the Bank could remedy this situation by creating a stable medium for the settlement of commercial obligations.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta in its series Working Paper with number 2005-16.

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Date of creation: 2005
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedawp:2005-16

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  1. Francois R. Velde & Warren E. Weber, 2000. "A Model of Bimetallism," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(6), pages 1210-1234, December.
  2. Arthur J. Rolnick & Francois R. Velde & Warren E. Weber, 1997. "The debasement puzzle: an essay on medieval monetary history," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, issue Fall, pages 8-20.
  3. Charles Goodhart, 1988. "The Evolution of Central Banks," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262570734, December.
  4. Ruilin Zhou, 2000. "Understanding intraday credit in large-value payment systems," Economic Perspectives, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, issue Q III, pages 29-44.
  5. Freeman, Scott, 1996. "The Payments System, Liquidity, and Rediscounting," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(5), pages 1126-38, December.
  6. Fujiki, Hiroshi, 2003. "A model of the Federal Reserve Act under the international gold standard system," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(6), pages 1333-1350, September.
  7. Sussman, Nathan & Zeira, Joseph, 2003. "Commodity money inflation: theory and evidence from France in 1350-1436," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(8), pages 1769-1793, November.
  8. Thomas J. Sargent & Neil Wallace, 1983. "A model of commodity money," Staff Report 85, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
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Cited by:
  1. Orphanides, Athanasios, 2013. "Is monetary policy overburdened?," IMFS Working Paper Series 75, Institute for Monetary and Financial Stability (IMFS), Goethe University Frankfurt.
  2. Stephen Quinn & William Roberds, 2006. "An economic explanation of the early Bank of Amsterdam, debasement, bills of exchange, and the emergence of the first central bank," Working Paper 2006-13, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
  3. Norman, Ben & Shaw, Rachel & Speight, George, 2011. "The history of interbank settlement arrangements: exploring central banks’ role in the payment system," Bank of England working papers 412, Bank of England.

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