Publications on Currency issuers vs. currency users
CBDC Next-Level: A New Architecture for Financial “Super-Stability”
Working Paper No. 1015 | February 2023Fractional reserve regimes generate fragile banking, and full reserve regimes (e.g., narrow banking) remove fragility at the cost of suppressing the role of banks as lenders. A Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) could provide safe money, but at the cost of potentially disrupting bank lending. Our aim is to avoid this potential disruption. Building on the recent literature on CBDCs, in this study we propose what we call the “CBDC next-level model,” whereby the central bank creates money by lending to banks, and banks on-lend the proceeds to the economy. The proposed model would allow for deposits to be taken off the balance sheet of banks and into the balance sheet of the central bank, thereby removing significant risk from the banking system without adversely impacting banks’ basic business. Once CBDC is injected in the system, irrespective of however it is used, wherever it accumulates, and whoever holds and uses it, it will always represent central bank equity, and no losses or defaults by individual banks or borrowers can ever dent it or weaken the central bank’s capital position or hurt depositors. Yet, individual borrowers and banks would still be required to honor their debt in full, lest they would be bound to exit the market or even be forced into bankruptcy. The CBDC next-level model solution would eliminate the threat of bank runs and system collapse and induce a degree of financial stability (“super-stability”) that would be unparalleled by any existing banking system.Download:Associated Program:Author(s):Biagio Bossone Michael Haines
Money, Power, and Monetary Regimes
Working Paper No. 861 | March 2016
Money, in this paper, is defined as a power relationship of a specific kind, a stratified social debt relationship, measured in a unit of account determined by some authority. A brief historical examination reveals its evolving nature in the process of social provisioning. Money not only predates markets and real exchange as understood in mainstream economics but also emerges as a social mechanism of distribution, usually by some authority of power (be it an ancient religious authority, a king, a colonial power, a modern nation state, or a monetary union). Money, it can be said, is a “creature of the state” that has played a key role in the transfer of real resources between parties and the distribution of economic surplus.
In modern capitalist economies, the currency is also a simple public monopoly. As long as money has existed, someone has tried to tamper with its value. A history of counterfeiting, as well as that of independence from colonial and economic rule, is another way of telling the history of “money as a creature of the state.” This historical understanding of the origins and nature of money illuminates the economic possibilities under different institutional monetary arrangements in the modern world. We consider the so-called modern “sovereign” and “nonsovereign” monetary regimes (including freely floating currencies, currency pegs, currency boards, dollarized nations, and monetary unions) to examine the available policy space in each case for pursuing domestic policy objectives.
This working paper is also available in Spanish and Catalan.Download:Associated Programs:Author(s):