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The Influence of Information Costs on the Integration of Financial Markets: Northern Europe, 1350-1560

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  • Oliver Volckart

Abstract

In this paper, the influence of information costs on the integration of Northern European financial markets between ca. 1350 and 1560 is explored. The approach is based on splitting information costs into their constitutive components and on measuring one of these, i.e. the costs of transmitting information, which have particular importance for market integration. The analysis has two main results: First, under pre-industrial conditions, when transmitting information was extremely labour intensive and very little capital intensive, transmission costs can be largely identified with labour costs, and were subject to the same influences. Next, the integration of financial markets depended crucially on the level of transmission costs, high costs being strongly and significantly correlated with weak integration, while lower costs favoured convergence.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Sonderforschungsbereich 649, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany in its series SFB 649 Discussion Papers with number SFB649DP2006-049.

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Length: 72 pages
Date of creation: May 2006
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:hum:wpaper:sfb649dp2006-049

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Keywords: Financial markets; integration; information costs; economic history;

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References

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  1. N. J. Mayhew, 1974. "Numismatic Evidence and Falling Prices in the Fourteenth Century," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 27(1), pages 1-15, 02.
  2. Barzel,Yoram, 1997. "Economic Analysis of Property Rights," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521597135, April.
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  4. Blum, Ulrich & Dudley, Leonard, 2003. "Standardised Latin and medieval economic growth," European Review of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 7(02), pages 213-238, August.
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  6. Dudley, Leonard, 1999. "Communications and economic growth," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 43(3), pages 595-619, March.
  7. John H. Munro, 1998. "The Maze of Medieval Mint Metrology in Flanders, France and England: Determining the Weight of the Marc de Troyes and the Tower Pound from the Economics of Counterfeiting, 1388 - 1469," Working Papers munro-98-01, University of Toronto, Department of Economics.
  8. Schubert, Eric S., 1989. "Arbitrage in the foreign exchange markets of London and Amsterdam during the 18th century," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 26(1), pages 1-20, January.
  9. Volckart, Oliver, 2004. "The economics of feuding in late medieval Germany," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 41(3), pages 282-299, July.
  10. John H. Munro, 2001. "Money, Wages, and Real Incomes in the Age of Erasmus: The Purchasing Power of Coins and of Building Craftsmen's Wages in England and the Low Countries, 1500 - 1540," Working Papers munro-01-01, University of Toronto, Department of Economics.
  11. Volckart, Oliver & Wolf, Nikolaus, 2006. "Estimating Financial Integration in the Middle Ages: What Can We Learn from a TAR Model?," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 66(01), pages 122-139, March.
  12. Neal, Larry, 1985. "Integration of International Capital Markets: Quantitative Evidence from the Eighteenth to Twentieth Centuries," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 45(02), pages 219-226, June.
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Cited by:
  1. Oliver Volckart, 2007. "Rules, Discretion or Reputation? Monetary Policies and the Efficiency of Financial Markets in Germany, 14th to 16th Centuries," SFB 649 Discussion Papers SFB649DP2007-007, Sonderforschungsbereich 649, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany.

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