chapter  1
69 Pages

Monetary Nationalism and International Stability

The five lectures which are here reproduced are necessarily confined to certain aspects of the wide subject indicated by the title. They are printed essentially as they were delivered and, as is explained in the first lecture, limitations of time made it necessary to choose between discussing the concrete problems of the present policy of Monetary Nationalism and concentrating on the broader theoretical issues on which the decision between an international standard and independent national currencies must ultimately be based. The first course would have involved a discussion of such technical questions as the operations of Exchange Equalization Accounts, Forward Exchanges, the choice and adjustment of parities, cooperation between central banks, etc., etc. The reader will find little on these subjects in the following pages. It appeared to me more important to use the time available to discuss the general ideas which are mainly responsible for the rise of Monetary Nationalism and to which it is mainly due that politics and practices which not long ago would have been frowned upon by all responsible financial experts are now generally employed throughout the world. The immediate influence of the theoretical speculation is probably weak, but that it has had a profound influence in shaping those views which today dominate monetary policy is not open to serious question. It seemed to me better therefore to concentrate on these wider issues.