By enabling the storage and transfer of purchasing power, money facilitates economic transactions and coordinates economic activity. But what is money? How is it generated? Distributed? How does money acquire value and that value change? How does money impact the economy, society?
This book explores money as a system of "tokens" that represent the purchasing power of individual agents. It looks at how money developed from debt/credit relationships, barter and coins into a system of gold-backed currencies and bank credit and on to the present system of fiat money, bank credit, near-money and, more recently, digital currencies. The author successively examines how the money circuit has changed over the last 50 years, a period of stagnant wages, increased household borrowing and growing economic complexity, and argues for a new theory of economies as complex systems, coordinated by a banking and financial system.
Money: What It Is, How It’s Created, Who Gets It and Why It Matters will be of interest to students of economics and finance theory and anyone wanting a more complete understanding of monetary theory, economics, money and banking.
Table of Contents
Introductory remarks, 1. The Theory of Money: Basic Concepts, Part I, 1.1 Introduction 1.2 Can We Do Without Money?, 1.3 Money, Markets, and Value, 2. The Theory of Money: Basic Concepts Part II, 2.1 Do We Need a Theory of Money?, 2.2 Operationalism and Theories of Money, 2.3 The Concept of Stock-flow Consistency, 2.4 Money and Macroeconomics, 2.5 A Framework for Understanding Theories of Money, 3. What Is Money?, 3.1 Some Brief Remarks on Money Throughout History, 3.2 Alternative Forms of Money, 3.3 So Just What Is Money? Metallists and Chartalists, 4. Modelling Money, 4.1 Modelling Coins, 4.2 Modelling Fiat Money, 5. How Money Is Created, 5.1 The Question of Money Generation, 5.2 Creating Traditional Forms of Money, 5.3 The Creation of Bank Deposits and the Multiplier, 5.4 The Creation of Bank Deposits and Endogenous Money Generation, 5.5 Nonconventional Ways Central Banks Can Create Money, 5.6 Other Ways to Create Money, 6. How Money Acquires Value and How that Value Changes over Time, 6.1 How Money Gains Acceptance, 6.2 How Money Acquires Value, 6.3 How the Value of Money Changes: The Elusive Concept of Inflation, 6.4 Chartalism and the State Theory of Money, 7. Money: How It’s Distributed, 7.1 The Question of the Distribution of Money, 7.2 Who Gets the (New) Money?, 7.3 Persuading the Sceptics: Loans and Bank Deposits, 7.4 Closing Considerations on the Role of Commercial Banks in Allocating Money, 8. Money and the Economy, 8.1 Money and Classical Economic Theory, 8.2 The Theory of the Circuit of Money, 8.3 Puzzles: The Declining Velocity of Money and Missing Inflation, 8.4 Money and Complexity, 8.5 Economic and Financial Instabilities, 8.6 Modern Money Theory, 8.7 Stock-flow Consistent Models, Concluding remarks, Index