Money and Prices in Colonial America: A New Test of Competing Theories
In a long-standing controversy over monetary experiences in colonial America, the main substantive issue concerns large and rapid increases in stocks of paper currency that were followed by negligible changes in price levels. The "backing theory" or anticlassical interpretation is that prices failed to respond to major increases in total money supplies. The "quantity theory" or classical hypothesis, by contrast, is that specie was exported in amounts that left total money stocks approximately unchanged. This paper develops and applies a strategy for resolving this fundamental disagreement despite the absence of data on stocks and flows of specie. Copyright 1992 by University of Chicago Press.
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