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Circulation of private notes during a currency shortage

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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 Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra in its series Economics Working Papers with number 811.

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Date of creation: Mar 2005
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Handle: RePEc:upf:upfgen:811

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Web page: http://www.econ.upf.edu/

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Keywords: money; notes; search; credit; currency shortage;

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  1. Dan Bernhardt, 1985. "Money and Loans," Working Papers 643, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
  2. Neil Wallace & Ruilin Zhou, 1996. "A model of a currency shortage," Working Papers 569, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  3. James Bullard & Bruce D. Smith, 2001. "The value of inside and outside money," Working Papers 2000-027, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
  4. 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.
  5. 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.
  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. Freeman, Scott, 1996. "Clearinghouse banks and banknote over-issue," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(1), pages 101-115, August.
  8. Williamson, S.D., 1998. "Private Money," Working Papers 98-09, University of Iowa, Department of Economics.
  9. Bullard, James & Smith, Bruce D., 2003. "Intermediaries and payments instruments," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 109(2), pages 172-197, April.
  10. 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.
  11. 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.
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