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Designing a Central Bank for Europe: A Cautionary Tale from the Early Years of the Federal Reserve System

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  • Eichengreen, Barry

Abstract

Important questions concerning the structure and operation of a European Central Bank remain unanswered. Although there exists no precedent for the process of institution-building in which the European Community is currently engaged, the founding and early operations of the Federal Reserve System in the United States provide a suggestive parallel. The US experience suggests that Stage 2 of the Delors Plan contains potential sources of instability and provides an argument for direct transition from Stage 1 (national monetary autonomy) to Stage 3 (centralization of authority). It also suggests the need for more thought about voting and mediation procedures to be used to reconcile and aggregate national interests.

Suggested Citation

  • Eichengreen, Barry, 1991. "Designing a Central Bank for Europe: A Cautionary Tale from the Early Years of the Federal Reserve System," CEPR Discussion Papers 585, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:585
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Buiter,Willem H. & Marston,Richard C., 1986. "International Economic Policy Coordination," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521337809, April.
    2. Barry Eichengreen, 1985. "International Policy Coordination in Historical Perspective: A View from the Interwar Years," NBER Chapters,in: International Economic Policy Coordination, pages 139-183 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Peter Temin, 1991. "Lessons from the Great Depression," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262700441, January.
    4. J. Bradford De Long, "undated". "`Liquidation' Cycles: Old-Fashioned Real Business Cycle Theory and the Great Depression," J. Bradford De Long's Working Papers _135, University of California at Berkeley, Economics Department.
    5. Alessandra Casella and Jonathan Feinstein., 1988. "Management of a Common Currency," Economics Working Papers 8891, University of California at Berkeley.
    6. Hamilton, James D., 1987. "Monetary factors in the great depression," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 145-169, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Singleton,John, 2010. "Central Banking in the Twentieth Century," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521899093, April.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    ECB; Federal Reserve System; Monetary Policy; Open Market Operations;

    JEL classification:

    • E42 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Monetary Sytsems; Standards; Regimes; Government and the Monetary System
    • E58 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Central Banks and Their Policies
    • F15 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Economic Integration
    • F33 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - International Monetary Arrangements and Institutions
    • F36 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Financial Aspects of Economic Integration
    • N22 - Economic History - - Financial Markets and Institutions - - - U.S.; Canada: 1913-

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