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The Black Swan of the Golden Periphery: The Ottoman Empire during the Classical Gold Standard Era

This study analyses the functioning of the “gold standard” in the Ottoman Empire during the pre-1914 gold standard era, with specific emphasis on the institutions regulating commodity money and fiat money. It explores the extent to which the Ottoman monetary system was an outlier with reference to the experiences of other peripheral countries. One of the findings reveals considerably limited circulation of notes in the Ottoman Empire even after adherence to the gold standard in 1880. By highlighting the anomalies of the Ottoman case, this paper concludes that the transition from commodity money to fiat money did not take place at the same rate across peripheries during the pre-1914 gold standard era. These differences may be explained by the relative autonomy of the central banks of issue from governments, and in turn may have implied changing degrees of monetary sovereignty and fiscal capacity across the members of the golden periphery.

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Paper provided by Department of Economic and Social History at the University of Cambridge in its series Working Papers with number 14.

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Length: 9800 words
Date of creation: 16 Mar 2013
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Handle: RePEc:cmh:wpaper:08
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  1. Bordo, Michael D. & Rockoff, Hugh, 1996. "The Gold Standard as a “Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval”," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 56(02), pages 389-428, June.
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  4. Bordo Michael D. & Kydland Finn E., 1995. "The Gold Standard As a Rule: An Essay in Exploration," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 32(4), pages 423-464, October.
  5. Bordo, Michael D & Redish, Angela, 1993. "Maximizing Seignorage Revenue during Temporary Suspensions of Convertibility: A Note," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 45(1), pages 157-68, January.
  6. Kuroda, Akinobu, 2007. "The Maria Theresa dollar in the early twentieth-century Red Sea region: a complementary interface between multiple markets," Financial History Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 14(01), pages 89-110, April.
  7. Fratianni, Michele & Spinelli, Franco, 2001. "Fiscal Dominance and Money Growth in Italy: The Long Record," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 252-272, April.
  8. Fischer, Stanley, 1982. "Seigniorage and the Case for a National Money," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 90(2), pages 295-313, April.
  9. Mankiw, N. Gregory, 1987. "The optimal collection of seigniorage : Theory and evidence," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 327-341, September.
  10. Adrian E. Tschoegl, 2001. "Maria Theresa's Thaler: A Case of International Money," Eastern Economic Journal, Eastern Economic Association, vol. 27(4), pages 443-462, Fall.
  11. Michael D. Bordo & Lars Jonung, 1999. "The Future of EMU: What Does the History of Monetary Unions Tell Us?," NBER Working Papers 7365, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Einaudi, Luca, 2001. "Money and Politics: European Monetary Unification and the International Gold Standard (1865-1873)," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199243662.
  13. Click, Reid W, 1998. "Seigniorage in a Cross-Section of Countries," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 30(2), pages 154-71, May.
  14. Luis Catão & Solomos Solomou, 2003. "Exchange Rates in the Periphery and International Adjustment Under the Gold Standard," IMF Working Papers 03/41, International Monetary Fund.
  15. Olivier Blanchard, 2004. "Fiscal Dominance and Inflation Targeting: Lessons from Brazil," NBER Working Papers 10389, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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