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Paper Promises: Money, Debt and the new World Order
Posted on February 05, 2012 at 11:25 AM EST
This is a great lecture, informed by Coggan's background as a historian. If you already know something about the subject I suggest starting at 36 minutes in. The talk is also available as a podcast via iTunes (look for LSE public lectures).
Time and again, this cycle has resulted in financial and economic crises. In the 1930s, countries abandoned the gold standard in the face of the Great Depression. In the 1970s, they abandoned the system of fixed exchange rates and ushered in a period of paper money. The results have been a long series of asset bubbles, from dotcom stocks to housing, and the elevation of the financial sector to economic dominance.
The current crisis not only pits creditors against debtors, but taxpayers against public sector workers, young against old and the western world against Asia. As in the 1930s and 1970s, a new monetary system will emerge; the rules for which will likely be set by the world's rising economic power, China.
Philip Coggan was a Financial Times journalist for over twenty years, including spells as a Lex columnist, personal finance editor and investment editor, and is now the Buttonwood columnist of The Economist.
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