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Private money and bank runs

  • Hongfei Sun
  • Stella Huangfu

This paper studies bank runs in a model with private money. We show that allowing claims on demand deposits to circulate as a medium of exchange can help prevent bank runs. In our model, there exists a unique banking equilibrium where no one demands early withdrawals of real goods and agents in need of liquidity use private money to finance consumption. With private money, the unique equilibrium not only eliminates bank runs but also improves banking efficiency. The implications of our model are consistent with the evidence from the banking history of the United States.

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Article provided by Canadian Economics Association in its journal Canadian Journal of Economics.

Volume (Year): 44 (2011)
Issue (Month): 3 (August)
Pages: 859-879

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Handle: RePEc:cje:issued:v:44:y:2011:i:3:p:859-879
Contact details of provider: Postal: Canadian Economics Association Prof. Steven Ambler, Secretary-Treasurer c/o Olivier Lebert, CEA/CJE/CPP Office C.P. 35006, 1221 Fleury Est Montréal, Québec, Canada H2C 3K4
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  1. Shouyong Shi, 1997. "A Divisible Search Model of Fiat Money," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(1), pages 75-102, January.
  2. Kocherlakota, Narayana R., 2003. "Societal benefits of illiquid bonds," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 108(2), pages 179-193, February.
  3. Champ, B. & Snith, B.D. & Williamson, D.S., 1991. "Currency Elasticity and Banking Panics: Theory and Evidence," RCER Working Papers 292, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
  4. Diamond, Douglas W & Dybvig, Philip H, 1983. "Bank Runs, Deposit Insurance, and Liquidity," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 91(3), pages 401-19, June.
  5. Ricardo Lagos & Randall Wright, 2004. "A unified framework for monetary theory and policy analysis," Staff Report 346, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
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