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Money and monetary stability in Europe, 1300–1914

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  • Karaman, K. Kıvanç
  • Pamuk, Şevket
  • Yıldırım-Karaman, Seçil

Abstract

This paper investigates the determinants of monetary stability in Europe from the late medieval era until World War I. Through this period, the anchor for monetary policy was the silver or gold value of the monetary unit. States, however, frequently abandoned this anchor, some depreciating their monetary units against silver and gold less than 10-fold and others more than 10,000-fold between 1500 and 1914. To understand the determinants of these differences, we compile a new and comprehensive monetary history dataset for all major states in Europe and test alternative theories. We find strong evidence that political factors, and in particular, fiscal capacity, political regime and warfare explain patterns of monetary stability. This finding is robust to addressing endogeneity, controlling for the instability induced by the mechanics of the monetary system and accounting for the impacts of new monetary technologies and the advent of fiat standard.

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  • Karaman, K. Kıvanç & Pamuk, Şevket & Yıldırım-Karaman, Seçil, 2020. "Money and monetary stability in Europe, 1300–1914," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 115(C), pages 279-300.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:moneco:v:115:y:2020:i:c:p:279-300
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jmoneco.2019.07.007
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    Cited by:

    1. Karaman, K. Kıvanç & Pamuk, Şevket & Yıldırım-Karaman, Seçil, 2020. "Money and monetary stability in Europe, 1300–1914," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 115(C), pages 279-300.
    2. Chen, Yao & Palma, Nuno & Ward, Felix, 2021. "Reconstruction of the Spanish money supply, 1492–1810," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 81(C).
    3. Monnet, Eric & Velde, François R., 2020. "Money, Banking, and Old-School Historical Economics," CEPR Discussion Papers 15348, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    4. Henriques, Antonio & Palma, Nuno Pedro G., 2019. "Comparative European Institutions and the Little Divergence, 1385-1800," CEPR Discussion Papers 14124, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    5. Adam Brzezinski & Roberto Bonfatti & K. KıvançKaraman & Nuno Palma, 2020. "Monetary Capacity," Economics Series Working Papers 926, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
    6. Leticia Arroyo Abad & Nuno Palma, 2020. "The Fruits of El Dorado: The Global Impact of American Precious Metals," Working Papers 0179, European Historical Economics Society (EHES).
    7. Irigoin, Alejandra, 2018. "Global silver: Bullion or Specie? Supply and demand in the making of the early modern global economy," MPRA Paper 88859, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. Nuno Palma, 2019. "American Precious Metals and their Consequences for Early Modern Europe," Working Papers 0174, European Historical Economics Society (EHES).
    9. Ufuk CAN & Zeynep Gizem CAN & Süleyman DEĞİRMEN, 2019. "Paranın Dolaşım Hızının ve Para Talebi Fonksiyonunun Ekonometrik Analizi: Türkiye Örneği," Istanbul Business Research, Istanbul University Business School, vol. 48(2), pages 218-247, November.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Monetary stability; Monetary standards; Fiat money; Commodity money; Seigniorage;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • E31 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Price Level; Inflation; Deflation
    • E42 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Monetary Sytsems; Standards; Regimes; Government and the Monetary System
    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy
    • N13 - Economic History - - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics; Industrial Structure; Growth; Fluctuations - - - Europe: Pre-1913
    • N43 - Economic History - - Government, War, Law, International Relations, and Regulation - - - Europe: Pre-1913
    • O23 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Development Planning and Policy - - - Fiscal and Monetary Policy in Development
    • O43 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Institutions and Growth

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