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Banking and Central Banking in Pre-WWII Grecce: Money and Currency Developments

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  • Sophia Lazaretou

    () (Bank of Greece)

Abstract

This paper aims to trace the history of central banking in pre-WWII Greece. To this end, we first study the country’s financial structure and its process of financial development. Several indices of financial development have been assessed and their evolvement has been studied. The country’s financial development had passed through different stages. Financial depth had increased in the turn of the 19th century and expanded further in the 1920s. However, on the basis of behavioural indices, banks were shown to be poorly asset-liability managed. They were also suffered by capital adequacy and were highly leveraged. The analysis of the composition of money supply and its long run behaviour suggests that monetary base variations were the proximate determinants of money supply movements, whereas money multiplier had a minimum impact. Central banking in pre-WWII Greece is viewed with regard to the monetary policy strategy, the monetary policy implementation framework and state interventions. The balance sheet of the Bank of Greece reveals an excessive focus on the chosen monetary policy strategy of a currency peg. Domestic credit was controlled via liquidity-providing standing facilities, either discounts or advances. Moreover, Bank’s considerable involvement in government re-financing might indicate that state interventions were considerable.

Suggested Citation

  • Sophia Lazaretou, 2008. "Banking and Central Banking in Pre-WWII Grecce: Money and Currency Developments," Working Papers 86, Bank of Greece.
  • Handle: RePEc:bog:wpaper:86
    as

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Leandro Prados De La Escosura, 2016. "Economic freedom in the long run: evidence from OECD countries (1850–2007)," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 69(2), pages 435-468, May.
    2. Dimitrios Sideris, 2009. "Optimum Currency Areas Structural Changes and the Endogeneity of the OCA Criteria: Evidence from Six New EU Member States," Working Papers 99, Bank of Greece.
    3. Milan Sojic & Ljiljana Djurdjevic, 2008. "Monetary Policy Objectives and Istruments used by the Privileged National Bank of the Kingdom of Serbia (1884 - 1914)," Working Papers 87, Bank of Greece.
    4. Matthias Morys, 2016. "Financial supervision to fight fiscal dominance? The gold standard in Greece and South-East Europe between economic and political objectives and fiscal reality, 1841-1939," Discussion Papers 16/05, Department of Economics, University of York.
    5. Dimitrios Sideris, 2011. "Optimum currency areas, structural changes and the endogeneity of the OCA criteria: evidence from six new EU member states," Applied Financial Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, pages 195-206.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Central banking; Financial intermediation; Money.;

    JEL classification:

    • E50 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - General
    • N23 - Economic History - - Financial Markets and Institutions - - - Europe: Pre-1913

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