Monetary Musing

MacroTrends

Kondratieff Waves & Schumpeter’s Creative Destruction
Most people are familiar with the term “history repeats itself” in the context of the rise and fall of empires and civilizations, but many economists...

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Culture, Complexity & Capital Markets in the 21st Century
During the Panic of 2008 and the recession that followed it, fundamental problems within the United States’ economy were exposed, but unfortunately, ultimately ignored. Today,...

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Economic Globalization & the Next International Monetary Regime, I
Time for a Change? For about the last 200 years the nations of the world have operated under different economic regimes. For most of the nineteenth...

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Economic Globalization & the Next International Monetary Regime, II
If the world adopts another international monetary regime over the coming decades it appears that the concept of SDRs will play a significant role. SDRs,...

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The History of Long-Term Interest Rates: From 1790 to 2016
When one examines the current global economic system and compares it with those of the past, it becomes apparent that although the current system is...

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A Brief Overview of the Monetary Value of Gold
When most people think of “money” today the idea of cash usually comes to mind first and then possibly a credit line; but how often...

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“The more you know about the past, the better prepared you are for the future.”

Historical Insights

Eternal Recurrence: The Rise and Fall of Complex Civilizations
Most people have heard the cliché, “history repeats itself” but how many have considered what it really means or even if it is valid? Surely,...

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Dawn of an Empire: The Washington Consensus Economic Policy
When president George H.W. Bush delivered a speech before a joint session of Congress that was in favor of armed action against Iraq, he declared...

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Post World War Rebuilding: The Rise and Fall of the Bretton Woods System
In July 1944 outside of the small town of Bretton Woods, New Hampshire, representatives from forty four of the allied nations fighting in World War...

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Great European Empires: The Economics of World Wars I and II
No two wars in history have defined an entire century more than World Wars I and II; in fact, to many, those two wars have...

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Institutionalized Incompetence: Hyperinflation in the Weimar Republic
In the modern lexicon the term “Weimar” has become a euphemism for government waste, ineptitude, and general incompetence. The origin of the term comes from...

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A Monetary System Backed by Gold: The Rise and Fall of the Classical Gold Standard
Most of you reading this are probably aware that the current global monetary system employs currencies that are not backed by anything tangible. You cannot...

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The Enlightenment and Economics in the Eighteenth Century
The Enlightenment, which roughly coincides with the eighteenth century, was a period in world history where the old order of government and religion was challenged...

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A Middle Age Transition: The Economic System of Mercantilism, Ca. 1500-1800
Western Europe’s transition from the Middle Ages to what historians commonly call the “Early Modern Period” was not simple and there is no specific point...

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An Economic Awakening: Renaissance Florence and the Birth of Capitalism
The economic ideas of Renaissance Italy laid the groundwork for modern capitalism by introducing complex banking methods, advanced shipping, and the idea of monopolies just...

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Struggle for the Holy Land: The Economic aspects of the Crusades
Among all periods in human history, perhaps none are more maligned and misunderstood than the Crusades. Today, many use the word as a euphemism for...

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A Bridge Through the Dark Ages: Charlemagne and the Carolingian Dynasty
To most historians the period in western European history known as the Dark Ages began with the collapse of the western Roman Empire in AD...

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The Collapse of the Roman Economy, Part II: Third Century to the Last Emperor in the West
As the inflation of the third century AD gripped Rome, other fissures in the fragile economy began to manifest. Some of the economic problems were...

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The Collapse of the Roman Economy, Part I: Third Century to the Last Emperor in the West
Often the numerous “barbarian” invasions of Roman territory and later Rome itself is pointed to as the ultimate reason for Rome’s collapse, but as the...

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Savior of Rome: Tiberius and Quantitative Easing during the Early Roman Empire
When the emperor Tiberius came to power in AD 14 Rome was at the height of its power and its citizens enjoyed material wealth that...

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Ideas from the Ancient World: The Economic Emergence of Western Civilization
The modern economic system that has enveloped the globe and the daily lives of most of the world’s inhabitants did not begin overnight, nor did...

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