03 April 2011
Betting on Foreign Exchange
That situation, their commodification: change came slowly, in many steps. In this chapter, I'd like to trace those steps, because they are critical to understanding the crisis that is our central topic. We have come back again and again to the idea of "hard money" versus "soft." How did money get so chronically soft? For simplicity's sake, this will be a US-centric account of what is in fact a multinational story.
1. Bimetallism and the Wizard(s) of oz
3. Gold Returns: Bretton Woods system, 1944-1971.
4. US Hegemony Wanes
5. Johnson to Nixon. The end of the gold window.
6. A “Tobin tax” and other dubious notions arise.
7. Back to Chicago: Leo Melamed, and how the Merc outflanked the CBOT
8. Everything floats against everything. What could go wrong?
9. British pound in 1992, East Asian currencies later in the decade.
10. Staggering proliferation and complexity of financial derivatives.
11. Does the FX market constrain central banks? How well or poorly?
12. Another angle on the CME/CBOT merger
Knowledge is warranted belief -- it is the body of belief that we build up because, while living in this world, we've developed good reasons for believing it. What we know, then, is what works -- and it is, necessarily, what has worked for us, each of us individually, as a first approximation. For my other blog, on the struggles for control in the corporate suites, see www.proxypartisans.blogspot.com.