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Why did Britain have broad money supply targets?

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact Dr Duncan Needham.

http://www.hist.cam.ac.uk/directory/djn33@cam.ac.uk

The British monetary authorities have traditionally focused on broader measures of the money supply than their counterparts elsewhere. The reasons include: the willingness of UK banks to allow customers to make payments by drawing on time deposits, the particularities of the UK approach to managing the national debt and the foreign exchange reserves, and the flow-of-funds system of national accounts developed after World War II. This paper outlines these reasons, and explores the implications for the UK’s often-fractious relationship with the International Monetary Fund from the 1950s to the 1970s. It explains why IMF conditionality on loans to the UK focused on broad aggregates.

This talk is part of the Financial History Seminar series.

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