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The big problem of large bills: the Bank of Amsterdam and the origins of central banking

  • Stephen Quinn
  • William Roberds

This paper outlines a model of the first true central bank, the Bank of Amsterdam, founded in 1609. Employing a variant of the Freeman (1996) model of money and payments, we first analyze the problematic monetary situation in the Netherlands prior to the founding of the Bank. We then use the model to describe how the Bank could remedy this situation by creating a stable medium for the settlement of commercial obligations.

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Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta in its series FRB Atlanta Working Paper No. with number 2005-16.

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Date of creation: 2005
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedawp:2005-16
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  1. Rolnick, Arthur J. & Velde, François R. & Weber, Warren E., 1996. "The Debasement Puzzle: An Essay on Medieval Monetary History," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 56(04), pages 789-808, December.
  2. Sussman, Nathan & Zeira, Joseph, 2003. "Commodity money inflation: theory and evidence from France in 1350-1436," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(8), pages 1769-1793, November.
  3. François R. Velde & Warren E. Weber, 1998. "A model of bimetallism," Working Papers 588, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  4. Thomas J. Sargent & Neil Wallace, 1983. "A model of commodity money," Staff Report 85, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  5. Fujiki, Hiroshi, 2003. "A model of the Federal Reserve Act under the international gold standard system," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(6), pages 1333-1350, September.
  6. Freeman, Scott, 1996. "The Payments System, Liquidity, and Rediscounting," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(5), pages 1126-38, December.
  7. Ruilin Zhou, 2000. "Understanding intraday credit in large-value payment systems," Economic Perspectives, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, issue Q III, pages 29-44.
  8. de Vries,Jan & van der Woude,Ad, 1997. "The First Modern Economy," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521570619.
  9. Charles Goodhart, 1988. "The Evolution of Central Banks," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262570734, June.
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