Stability and the Gold Standard

August, 2015

Many studies find that economic stability on the gold standard was as good as or better than it has been under the central banking. Yet despite this evidence, most economists believe a gold standard creates undesirable economic outcomes including economic volatility, price instability, financial panics, the transference of bad policies via the exchange rate, and even speculation-induced collapse. As chairman of the Federal Reserve, Ben Bernanke argued these supposed weaknesses of the gold standard relegated it an inferior monetary system and justified the establishment of the Fed. We examine the criticisms of the gold standard made by Bernanke and other economists and find that they are inconsistent with most historical evidence from international studies and from the pre-Fed gold standard in the United States.

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