This page has been archived and commenting is disabled.

"The Financial System Is Vulnerable," NYFed Asks "Could The Dollar Lose Its Reserve Status?"

Tyler Durden's picture


When a tin-foil-hat-wearing blog full of digital dickweeds suggest the dollar's reserve currency status is at best diminishing, it is fobbed off as yet another conspiracy theory (yet to be proved conspiracy fact) too horrible to imagine for the status quo huggers. But when the VP of Research at the New York Fed asks "Could the dollar lose its status as the key international currency for international trade and international financial transactions," and further is unable to say why not, it is perhaps worth considering the principal contributing factors she warns of.


Via The World Economic Forum blog,

Could the dollar lose its status as the key international currency for international trade and international financial transactions, and if so, what would be the principal contributing factors?

Speculation about this issue has long been abundant, and views diverse. After the introduction of the euro, there was much public debate about the euro displacing the dollar (Frankel 2008). The monitoring and analysis included in the ECB’s reports on “The International Role of the Euro” (e.g. ECB 2013) show that the international use of the euro mainly progressed in the years prior to 2004, and that it has largely stalled since then. More recently, the euro has been displaced by the renminbi as the debate’s main contender for reducing the international role of the dollar (Frankel 2011).

This debate has mainly argued in terms of ‘traditional’ determinants of international currency status, such as country size, economic stability, openness to trade and capital flows and the depth and liquidity of financial markets (Portes and Rey 1998). Considerations regarding the strength of country institutions have more recently been added to the list. All of these factors influence the ability of currencies to function as stores of value, to support liquidity, and to be accepted for international payments. Inertia also plays a role (e.g. Krugman 1984, Goldberg 2010), raising the bar for currencies that might uproot the status quo.

We argue here – building on discussions we began during the World Economic Forum Summit on the Global Agenda 2013 – that the rise in global financial-market integration implies an even broader set of drivers of the future roles of international currencies. In particular, we maintain that the set of drivers should include the institutional and regulatory frameworks for financial stability.

The emphasis on financial stability is linked with the expanded awareness of governments and international investors of the importance of safety and liquidity of related reserve assets. For a currency to have international reserve status, the related assets must be useable with minimal transaction-price impact, and have relatively stable values in times of stress. If the risk of banking stress or failures is substantial, and the potential fiscal consequences are sizeable, the safety of sovereign assets is compromised exactly at times of financial stress, through the contingent fiscal liabilities related to systemic banking crises. Monies with reserve-currency status therefore need to be ones with low probabilities of twin sovereign and financial crises. Financial stability reforms can – alongside fiscal prudence – help protect the safety and liquidity of sovereign assets, and can hence play a crucial role for reserve-currency status.

The broader emphasis on financial stability also derives indirectly from the expanded awareness in the international community of the occasionally disruptive international spillovers of centre-country funding shocks (Rey 2013). We argue that regulatory reforms can play a role in influencing these spillovers. Resilience-enhancing financial regulation of global banks can help reduce the volatility of capital flows that are intermediated through such banks.

On financial stability and reserve-currency status

International reserve assets tend to be provided by sovereigns, notably due to the fiscal capacity of the state and the credibility of the lender of last resort function of the central bank during liquidity crises (see also De Grauwe 2011 and Gourinchas and Jeanne 2012). Systemic financial events can be accompanied by pressures on the government budget, however. While provision of a fiscal backstop to the banking sector is not the best ex ante approach to policy, fiscal support will tend to be forthcoming if the risk and estimated welfare costs of a systemic fallout are otherwise deemed too high.

Yet banking sector risks – and inadequate capacity within the banking sector to absorb these risks – can end up exceeding a government’s ability to provide a credible fiscal backstop without adversely affecting the safety of its sovereign assets. The fiscal consequences of bailouts may result in increased sovereign risk and the loss of safe-asset status, with implications for the status of the currency in question in the international monetary system.

To increase the likelihood that sovereign assets remain safe during systemic events, the sovereign can undertake financial and fiscal reforms that decouple the fiscal state of the sovereign from banking crises. Such reforms should achieve, in part, a reduction in the likelihood of and need for bailouts through increased resilience and loss absorption capacity of the financial system, and by ensuring sufficient fiscal space for credible financial-sector support (see also Obstfeld 2013).

Reform initiatives

A number of current reform initiatives already take steps in this direction. These include:

  • Reforms to bank capital and liquidity regulation, which reduce the likelihood that financial institutions, and notably systemically important ones (SIFIs), become distressed;
  • Initiatives that seek to counteract the procyclicality of leverage, and to strengthen oversight; and
  • Recovery and resolution regimes for distressed systemically important financial institutions (SIFIs) are being improved.

Importantly, initiatives are underway to improve recovery and resolution in the international context. While a global agreement on cross-border bank resolution is currently not in place, bilateral agreements among some pairs of countries are being forged ex ante to facilitate lower-cost resolution ex post. Further, the resilience of the system as a whole is being strengthened, to better contain the systemic externalities of funding shocks. Examples include:

  • The strengthening of the resilience of central counterparties and other financial market infrastructures; and
  • The foreign currency swap arrangements among central banks to provide access to foreign currency funding liquidity at times when market prices of such liquidity are punishingly high.

Nevertheless, the financial system contains vulnerabilities – globally, as well as in individual currency areas. The negative sovereign banking feedback loop may be weakened in many countries, but has not been fully severed. Moreover, reforms are not necessarily evenly implemented across countries. Fiscal capacities to provide credible backstops of the financial sector during stress vary widely. The consequences of recent reforms for the future of key international currencies are therefore open. Scope remains for countries vying for reserve-currency status to use the tool of financial stability reform to protect the safety and liquidity of their sovereign assets from the contingent liabilities of financial systemic risk.

Financial stability reforms matter for spillovers and capital flows

International capital flows yield many advantages to home and host countries alike. Yet the international monetary system still faces potential challenges stemming from unanticipated volatility in flows, as well as occasionally disruptive spillovers of shocks in centre-country funding conditions to the periphery. With the events around the collapse of Lehman Brothers, disruption in dollar-denominated wholesale funding markets led to retrenchment of international lending activities. Capital flows to some emerging-market economies then recovered with a vengeance as investors searched for yield outside the countries central to the international monetary system, where interest rates were maintained at the zero lower bound. After emerging markets were buoyed by the influx of funds, outflows and repositioning occurred when markets viewed some of the expansionary policies in the US as more likely to be unwound.

While macroprudential measures – and in extreme cases, capital controls – are some of the policy options available for addressing the currently intrinsic vulnerabilities of some capital-flow recipient periphery countries (IMF 2012), we point out that these vulnerabilities can also be addressed in part by financial stability reforms in centre countries.

Consider, for example, the consequences of the regulatory reforms pertaining to international banks that are currently being proposed or implemented. Improvements in the underlying financial strength and loss-absorbing capacity of global banks could have the beneficial side-effect of reducing some of the negative spillovers associated with unanticipated volatility in international banking flows – especially those to emerging and developing economies. Empirical research suggests that better-capitalized financial institutions, and institutions with more stable funding sources and stronger liquidity management, adjust their balance sheets to a lesser degree when funding conditions tighten (Gambacorta and Mistrulli 2004, Kaplan and Minoiu 2013). The result extends to cross-border bank lending (Cetorelli and Goldberg 2011, Bruno and Shin 2013).

While financial stability reforms may reduce the externalities of centre-country funding conditions, they retain the features of international banking that promote efficient allocation of capital, risk sharing and effective financial intermediation. By enhancing the stability of global institutions and reducing some of the amplitude of the volatility of international capital flows, they may address some of the objections to the destabilising features of the current system.

Cross-border capital flows that take place outside of the global banking system have recently increased relative to banking flows (Shin 2013). Regulation of global banks does very little to address such flows, and may even push more flows toward the unregulated sector. At the same time, however, regulators are considering non-bank and non-insurer financial institutions as potential global systemically-important financial institutions (Financial Stability Board 2014).


We have argued that the policy and institutional frameworks for financial stability are important new determinants of the relative roles of currencies in the international monetary system. Financial stability reform enhances the safety of reserve assets, and may contribute indirectly to the stability of international capital flows. Of course, the ‘old’ drivers of reserve currencies continue to be influential. China’s progress in liberalising its capital account, and structural reforms to generate medium-term growth in the Eurozone – as examples of determinants of the future international roles of the renminbi and the euro relative to the US dollar – will continue to influence their international currency status. Our point is that such reforms will not be enough. The progress achieved on financial stability reforms in major currency areas will also greatly influence the future roles of their currencies.

Authors: Linda Goldberg, Vice President of International Research at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and Signe Krogstrup, Assistant Director and Deputy Head of Monetary Policy Analysis, Swiss National Bank; Member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on the International Monetary System


- advertisements -

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:19 | 5123539 TeamDepends
TeamDepends's picture

The dollar is done, you killed it you wannabe Magi!!!!

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:24 | 5123562 Newsboy
Newsboy's picture

What's next, eh?


Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:29 | 5123578 wintermute
wintermute's picture


It won't be the yuan or euro.

The Bitcoin network is now protecting its transactions with 200 million million million calculations per second [1000 calc equivalents per hash]

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:31 | 5123604 Anusocracy
Anusocracy's picture

Given enough time, government will destroy everything it controls.

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:36 | 5123633 wee-weed up
wee-weed up's picture

If the Fed has to ask...

"Could the dollar lose its status as the key international currency for international trade and international financial transactions,"

Then it's the best proof they don't have a fuckin' clue!

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:42 | 5123662 linniepar
linniepar's picture

Bye bye London fix and bye bye dollar. In due time.

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:56 | 5123722 philipat
philipat's picture

So, by virtue of having the equivlent in reserves of USD 5 Trillion (Possibly not including an undisclosed amount of Gold), her criteria seem to recommend CNY as a better reserve currency....??

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 23:22 | 5123830 y3maxx
y3maxx's picture

...Before the US Dollar loses its World Currency Reserve Fiat Status....Dollars to Donuts, be assured most of the Planet will be blown to bits first....No pun intended.

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:47 | 5123682 ebworthen
ebworthen's picture

As if the Bank of England never asked if the British Pound was at risk of losing its reserve status.


Wed, 08/20/2014 - 23:51 | 5123775 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

Of course the US dollar will not be the reserve currency any longer, that's a good thing, it's only trouble.  And course of course a gov will destroy everything it controls, they always have, this has been known for like, forever bitchez.  But I don't care tonight because I'm enjoying my homemade brew,

"I've been a puppet, a pauper, a pirate, a poet, a pawn and a king.... 

I've been up and down and over and out and I know one thing....

Each time I find myself flat on my face....

I pick myself up and get back in the race. 

That's life, that's life, I tell you I can't deny it."

-Love you Frankie, you kept it real.



Thu, 08/21/2014 - 01:25 | 5124076 Salsipuedes
Salsipuedes's picture

This guy kept it real-er without kissing every politicians's ass from Kennedy to Kruschev to King George the First :

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:32 | 5123607 Bad Attitude
Bad Attitude's picture

The next reserve currency will not be a digital currency like bitcoin because TPTB can't control it.

Forward (over the cliff)!

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 09:32 | 5124722 Toolshed
Toolshed's picture

"The next reserve currency will not be a digital currency like bitcoin because TPTB can't control it."

You are quite mistaken on that point.

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 10:02 | 5124839 withglee
withglee's picture

So what will it be ... and how will it differ from the USD or the Federal Reserve Note?

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:31 | 5123608 Bad Attitude
Bad Attitude's picture

(duplicate post)

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:27 | 5123582 Greenskeeper_Carl
Greenskeeper_Carl's picture

"The horses got out! Quick, close the barn door!"

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:33 | 5123625 fauxhammer
fauxhammer's picture

Ms. Goldberg appears to be a day late and a renminbi short

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:35 | 5123632 Escrava Isaura
Escrava Isaura's picture

Consider this post by “Everybodys All American” .

I found it to be very insightful:

Everybodys All American: I differ. The Fed thinks they can control rates still. We shall see. Remember, the rest of the world is just as fucked economically. So maybe they have a chance and maybe they don't and use the backup plan below.

The loss of reserve currency status is not something any of these Fed governors want on their watch and that's what they are ultimately dealing with in addition to managing a ever rising 4.5 trillion balance sheet. A stock market crash is manageable but a dollar crash is not. That would be game over. So simply put they will hold their current balance sheet as long as possible without expanding it. The question to ask is what would possibly allow them to unload some or all of it? The answer is a stock market crash and a flight to the safety of US Treasuries. Rinse and repeat.

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 00:12 | 5123967 Tinky
Tinky's picture

The author forgot to use a crucial set of quotes around the fifth word in this line:

...a flight to the safety of US Treasuries

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 07:32 | 5124315 Escrava Isaura
Escrava Isaura's picture


The author, "Everybodys All American" did address it, indirectly:

"The Fed thinks they can control... We shall see. Remember, the rest of the world is just as fucked economically."

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:30 | 5123596 SHEEPFUKKER

Just shoot the USD 12x at close range and she'll be history. 

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 17:11 | 5126863 IMACOINNUT
IMACOINNUT's picture

After reading this twice and retaining the same conclusion each time, it occurs to me as a non-financial observer that we are fuked. This explanation by a so called wizard of econonics of the fed, is very disturbing as I learn that they haven't got a clue what to do to prevent the loss of reserve currency. 

Therefore if problems develop they will regulate, adjust, modify, reregulate and change policy to fix it. What a crock of shit.

One has to ask 'do these folks read the crap they print ' ? and if so do they not realize that many others do as well! So again, we are so fuked. They must be sure this is the end game of the fed and mainstreet America will be a banana republic.

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:22 | 5123552 bitterwolf
bitterwolf's picture

yeah ,new paradigm shift to global electronic currency with g-20 something as stakeholders.same players-now integrated in a global cartel

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:31 | 5123619 RafterManFMJ
RafterManFMJ's picture

NY Fed asks, "The plane has crashed into the goddamn mountain; are we fucked?"

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:49 | 5123697 Greenskeeper_Carl
Greenskeeper_Carl's picture

Ya. The fact that these people are even talking about it probably means it has already happened, there just isn't widespread recognition yet.

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:57 | 5123727 Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Fed says "If you are in front of the plane and I am in the back you're fucked before me." The insanity runs deep in the financial priest class.

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:25 | 5123564 Trade Guru
Trade Guru's picture

The writing is on the wall.....but a move away from reserve status takes a very long time to unfold.

Everything currently happening in the East suggests this move is well under way BRICS bank and the vast number of trade agreements China already has with other countries ( 23 now  - and counting )


The rest of the planet won't put up with The U.S "abuse of worlds reserve" much longer.

More from Kong:

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 07:25 | 5124313 Winston Churchill
Winston Churchill's picture

Takes forty to fifty years in history.

The clock was started in 1971.

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:26 | 5123566 erg
erg's picture

Could it lose it's reserve status?

Does Al Gore shit in the forest?

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:25 | 5123569 dirtyfiles
dirtyfiles's picture

first $US funeral guests?

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:25 | 5123570 Chupacabra-322
Chupacabra-322's picture

The short answer:


Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:27 | 5123584 emersonreturn
emersonreturn's picture

wreally?  wreally & wreally--you think?!

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:30 | 5123594 nicoacademia
nicoacademia's picture

they only asking this now? 



Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:29 | 5123600 NOTaREALmerican
NOTaREALmerican's picture

How does that (old, very old and outdated) saying about bank defending themselves go:  If you have to say you're not bankrupt, you're bankrupt.

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:30 | 5123601 fuu
fuu's picture

The next reserve currency should be green shoots. They can print those all day on CNBC crawlers.

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:30 | 5123605 alexcojones
alexcojones's picture

That was the driest doom porn I've read in awhile.

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:35 | 5123630 RafterManFMJ
RafterManFMJ's picture

I bought some Doom Jelli at WalMart - It's for those times when ZH doesn't have the time or is too drunk to properly warm you up.

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:45 | 5123675 bitterwolf
bitterwolf's picture

cheap chinese shit dried up on me

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:44 | 5123672 Rican
Rican's picture

It was "for the ladies".

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:53 | 5123716 Greenskeeper_Carl
Greenskeeper_Carl's picture

It was pretty dry. And way longer than it needed to be.
"The fed printed too much money, and the us gov has run up far too much debt, more than it can ever repay, or even afford the interest on the debt in an environment of interest rates that are even close to normal. Therefore, the rest of the world no longer wants increasingly useless dollars or USTs, and are looking for an alternative"

Article complete. And I could have told them this years ago.

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:30 | 5123610 AdvancingTime
AdvancingTime's picture

We  are all interconnected for better or worse. A bad apple can spoil the whole basket. Welcome to the world our leaders have designed or allowed to form. Whether by design or merely as a byproduct of globalization we have weaved a web of financial transactions that circle the globe.

Over the last several years as money was printed by the central Banks it was not contained in the countries where in was printed. This money flowed across borders influencing and distorting markets and prices across the world. Some people have been calling for a "world currency" for years. the saying "one should never let a good crisis go to waste" means that a meltdown with high levels of fear would present a perfect opportunity and catalyst to advance this agenda down the field. Remember many people with agendas have a lot to gain when a major shift in the currency markets takes place. More on this subject in the article below.

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:31 | 5123612 mygameon
mygameon's picture

Does a Yellen shit in the woods? Or is he simply into Asian scat and renminbi?

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:33 | 5123617 Caviar Emptor
Caviar Emptor's picture

All we have to do is reinstate more pro-US puppet fascist military dictators in as many countries as possible like in the good old days.
Then watch king dollar return to the throne

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:40 | 5123651 techstrategy
techstrategy's picture

China will fractionally back RMB with gold and it is game over.

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:43 | 5123665 NOTaREALmerican
NOTaREALmerican's picture

Yeah, but as the guy above said:  WHY would the Chinese Elysium Class want the game to be over?

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:49 | 5123698 techstrategy
techstrategy's picture

Because we've become a 3rd world nation in terms of distribution of wealth and income, gutting our middle class, which has crushed our ability to grow consumption.  The dominant strategy for stability in China is to increase PPP adjusted income and reduce food costs (which can be 30-40% of income in China) for its people.  This also will create a wealth and income effect to increase domestic consumption in China.


All these slams are helping the Chinese accumulate enough gold to fractionally back the RMB... At a discount.

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 00:02 | 5123939 lasvegaspersona
lasvegaspersona's picture


That is simply not going to happen. The Swiss figured that out and they  just had a good currency. Having a currency redeemable in gold would likely kill their export trade on day one.

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:40 | 5123656 himaroid
himaroid's picture

Does Jim Willie have a Golden Jackass?

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:42 | 5123661 starman
starman's picture

IMF can't wait to take over to implement "IMF draw"! 

No paper no coins only bank transactions! 

Welcome to the future!  

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:42 | 5123663 sixsigma cygnus...
sixsigma cygnusatratus's picture

First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then they say "I'm shocked this could have happened."  Then you win.

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:44 | 5123668 NOTaREALmerican
NOTaREALmerican's picture

Jeez dude,  don't you read history?    Then they kill you.

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:46 | 5123681 sixsigma cygnus...
sixsigma cygnusatratus's picture

Okay, okay, so they kill you...but you still win the argument!

Fri, 08/22/2014 - 17:32 | 5131670 Cruel Aid
Cruel Aid's picture



Thu, 08/21/2014 - 06:57 | 5124278 Pumpkin
Pumpkin's picture

The dollar failing isn't going to feel like winning.  It will be as brutal as ripping a cancerous tumor out with bare hands.

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:42 | 5123666 alfred b.
alfred b.'s picture


        I expect his next question to be "Could Germany ask for its gold back"??


Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:47 | 5123669 Downtoolong
Downtoolong's picture

when the VP of Research at the New York Fed asks "Could the dollar lose its status as the key international currency…"

Don’t you mean the soon to be Ex VP of Research at the New York Fed?

Sorry Linda, this shit doesn’t play well into our narrative, or your career plans.

See you on the unemployment line applying for that next job opening as a bank teller in Idaho.


Wed, 08/20/2014 - 22:55 | 5123723 MeelionDollerBogus
MeelionDollerBogus's picture

Iffen yoose don't believes in dollar soo-premacy then you's a terr'st!

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 23:10 | 5123782 lasvegaspersona
lasvegaspersona's picture

The dollar is the only currency in history that ia purely fiat that the world has been conned into using as a reserve. In the past all other countries with the most prominent currencies (as Mike Maloney has pointed out) were just that...THE dominant currency. There were no central banks using those currencies as the asset that backed their currencies. Prior to 1971 e en the dollar was just a paper claim on gold. Only in the last 43 years has there been a 'reserve currency as we now have with the dollar.

deGalle called this the 'exorbitant privelege' but Robert Triffin noted that it was also the 'poison privelege' as it caused loss of industry in the home country. The world is done with this system It gives the USA the ability to import 'without the pain of work'. It has caused most other nations to be stuck with never to ve redeemed assets on the central bank balance sheet.

The next reserve won't be a currency. It will be gold. All these currency swaps are done to ensure trade can continue between the countries involved as the dollars says good bye. Currencies will be managed as mere (but reliable) media of exchange. Settlement will be done in gold though I would expect that trade will be mostly balanced. It won't require much gold if that is the case. Gold could be used to defend the currency in forex trading and to make periodic adjustments in the relative value of a country's money.

43 years has been long enough to teach then world this lesson. It had previously learned that gold as the medium of exchange was unworkable and disasterous in some circumstances such as during times of economic expansion. The Euro already has the structure to make the Euro an international medium of exchange. I expect most large countries will change their currency to the same structure with gold held as an asset marked to market.

This has been called freegold but whatever it is called it seems to be the way the Euro was structured and appears to be a vialble structure not only for that currency but for a new monetary system.

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 23:14 | 5123803 Seize Mars
Seize Mars's picture


Nice try. The only solution, the only solution, is to remove government from the money creation process.

In a world of limited resources, it only makes sense that money should itself be a limited resource.

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 23:25 | 5123845 lasvegaspersona
lasvegaspersona's picture


that could work i suppose (have not give that much thought but crypto currencies seem to be gaining in use).

I just don't see it happening soon. the real goal is to keep international trade going. 7 billion people depend upon the movement of fuel, food and iPods. As long as there is a trusted medium of exchange there could be a way. Could Bitcoin handle the trade of Suadi Arabia? Would China accept a currency that could not be easily used to buy gold? Would any large country give up the control of it's internal economy?

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 00:44 | 5124013 F0ster
F0ster's picture

Currencies are mearly measurement instruments for things, real goods and services of value (gold, houses, stocks, labor etc). What we need is a more universal way to measure value across disperate assets I.e a 'yard stick' but for 'value'. The whole concept of 'money' and 'value' needs to be fundementally rethought. Cryto currencies are somewhat novel but they are still based on the old 'currency' model.

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 08:51 | 5124549 withglee
withglee's picture

Money is "a promise to complete a trade". Always has been. Always will be. Forget about "rethinking". Start "thinking".

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 09:30 | 5124713 Toolshed
Toolshed's picture

Perhaps you should take you own advice since you obviously do not understand what money actually is.

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 09:39 | 5124746 withglee
withglee's picture

So tell me. How is (should be) money created?

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 10:06 | 5124876 Toolshed
Toolshed's picture

"So tell me. How is (should be) money created?"

Why don't you enlighten us with your wisdom, troll boy?

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 14:58 | 5126146 withglee
withglee's picture

The world's most popular money, Federal Reserve Notes are created in two ways. (1) They are exchanged for US Treasuries and other trading promises. (2) They are counterfeited (e.g. all the QE programs).

In reality, those exchanged for US Treasuries are also counterfeit. This is because the US never pays back their treasuries. They just roll them over ... and that is default.

Only a small portion of the money created circulates as currency and coin. Most circulates as accounting entries.

Now ... you tell me how money should be created.

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 16:55 | 5126756 Toolshed
Toolshed's picture

As I suspected, you are a clueless troll. As is common knowledge, FRN's are currency, not money. FRN stands for Federal Reserve Note, as in a promissory note. If you are unaware of that crucial distinction then perhaps you should do some research as opposed to spouting nonsense and provoking commentors on this site. I should not bother to attempt to enlighten one as yourself, but I will give you a few hints. Although I expect nothing but more absurdities emanating from your general direction.

This is a good start:

Basically, money is a store of value, among other things. Currency was created to facilitate trade. Currency is not a good store of value because it is easily and frequently debased by the issuing entity. This is why no currency has survived the test of time, but real stores of value, such as precious metals, minerals, food staples, etc. have been and continue to be stores of value throughout man's history.

Money is created by industrious individuals producing assets that can be exchanged for money. These can be products or services. In modern times people are usually paid for their efforts in currency, which is much easier to use to perform transactions for needed goods and services. But currency REPRESENTS money. It is not money due to the fact that it has no inherrent value, with the possible exception of coinage. What is the inherrent value of a FRN? That would be the cost of the paper and ink required to print it, plus the very small amount of labor, capital assets, etc used in it's printing, which is miniscule when spread across the vast number of FRNs printed. In fact, most currency nowadays is created electronically and exists only on computers at financial institutions. The FED recently admitted that every time a financial institution makes a loan they, in fact, create money out of thin air that is only extinguished when the loan is repaid. But don't take my word for any of this.......look it up yourself. I am now done with you.

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 18:23 | 5127237 withglee
withglee's picture

You are talking in circles. You say money is created by individuals producing assets that can be exchanged for money. Fine. The good or service is created "before" money stands for it. Right? And then currency stands for this "money". Right? So no money exists until someone produces something or someone serves someone, and wants to trade it for something else, right? And then that money is created and is traded for the other good the trader wants, right? So once money is created, it exists forever after, right?

Just how does that differ from a FRN? The people working for government have performed a service. The people selling to the government have produced a good. The government pays them with FRNs (or in the old days, silver certificates), if they have them, presumably from tax collections. If they don't have them, they borrow FRNs (from the Fed) giving treasuries in return. The Fed creates them out of thin air. Who, and in what instance, would you have them created?

Further, a house builder builds a house. He does this usually by borrowing for the labor and materials. He then marks those up and looks for a buyer. Usually the buyer doesn't have cash. So the borrower gets a mortgage. He promises to make 360 equal monthly payments and is given FRNs or their equivalent which he gives to the builder. Where did those FRNs come from? Surely you're not suggesting they all came from those serving the government. That would suggest an economy could not exist without government. Of course we know it can.

I have said money is "a promise to complete a trade". Government workers and suppliers promise to deliver goods and services to the government. The government promises to give them things they need and want in return. Rather than giving them food, a car, a house, a lawnmower, etc., they give them FRNs that stand for those things ... whether they have actually been produced yet or not.

But this even works for people who don't work for the government. You work a week and your employer pays you in arrears as he promised. He pays you initially with money he borrows. As a going concern, he pays you with retained earnings. He looks just like the government to the economy. Where did the money he borrows come from? It came from you who worked a week before getting paid. It came from products and services he sold ... after consuming your services and suppliers goods. It came from a bank who held people's money on deposit. But that doesn't create enough money for all the trades that need and want to be made. So money is created against promises, just like it is created against actual goods. And if the promise is kept, there is absolutely no difference.

You are able to buy a home with a 360 month promise to complete a trade. You promise to give a portion of your services to the builder each month for 360 months. But the builder doesn't want that. He wants all his money right now so he can pay his workers and his suppliers. Thus, the FRNs the buyer borrows from his lender come from wherever the lender gets them. Strict capitalism says a capitalist must first have traded for them before they can be loaned to the borrower.

Banks stretched capitalism a little bit (actually a lot). They got a deal where they can loan 10 times what they hold in capital and deposits. Perhaps this is the part of the existing system you want to remove. Is that correct?

Are you saying money only comes into existence when something is produced and then stays in existance forever after? Suppose I produce a bushel of corn and exchange it for money. A cow eats the corn so the corn is gone. You eat the cow so it is gone. But the money still exists, right?

That's a problem. Money exists when the asset it stands for no longer exists. How can that be. You've not spoken of the destruction of money have you?

I do. I say money is created when someone promises to complete a trade. I say money is destroyed when that trade is completed ... it has served its purpose.

And by the way, what part of a bushel of corn is not created out of thin air ... or at least air with some moisture and carbon-dioxide in thin air?

All the things I've stated exist and happen right now. You say that's wrong. So what are you going to disallow? Borrowing? Borrowing before something is produced or served? What???? And why???? What problem are you trying to solve? Counterfeiting is the only problem I see we have? Well, we also have an imbalance between interest collections and defaults that results in inflation. What do you propose to make those go away. Does producing an asset before money stands for it make those things go away?

When you think it through, you see it's all about keeping the scorekeeper honest.


Thu, 08/21/2014 - 08:49 | 5124542 withglee
withglee's picture

Having done that, how do you propose to create money?

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 23:26 | 5123853 Quaderratic Probing
Quaderratic Probing's picture

All past gold based reserve currencies failed, as in past.
Any new gold based reserve will also fail.

Why? Its not the base or fiat that is the problem. Its the humans who always bend the game, and always will.

There is nothing new under the sun, trying to make an old failure work only sets up a new failure.

The Fed was set up to bridge over the future failures they knew would come, and they have and they will again.

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 00:03 | 5123923 lasvegaspersona
lasvegaspersona's picture

The sytem I describe is not 'gold based'. Gold is not required, it just works as the best store of value.

I agree using gold as the medium of exchange has failed but failure always results when the medium of exchange and the store of value are the same thing.

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 08:48 | 5124539 withglee
withglee's picture

Settlement will be done in gold though I would expect that trade will be mostly balanced. It won't require much gold if that is the case.

How are you going to do settlement in gold ... and not use gold? Backing a medium of exchange with a commodity means being able to obtain that commodity in exchange for accounts that represent it. Otherwise, what does the commodity bring to the party?

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 09:29 | 5124707 Toolshed
Toolshed's picture

Yes, we all know that EVERYTHING fails eventually. Maybe you missed the tag line to ZH's logog:

"On a long enough timeline the survival rate for everyone drops to zero."

And, by the way, I agree that the real problem is human based.

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 08:44 | 5124521 withglee
withglee's picture

How can gold be the next reserve? There's only about 1oz of it per person on Earth. How should money be created?

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 23:11 | 5123785 q99x2
q99x2's picture

Banksters are taking down the US, stealing all its assets and moving the money into Russia.

They are banksters. That's what banksters do.

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 23:11 | 5123790 Seize Mars
Seize Mars's picture


tin-foil-hat-wearing blog full of digital dickweeds

Wait, what!?

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 23:31 | 5123861 Flagit
Flagit's picture


Wait, what!?

No doubt.

Wrong day to get mouthy, blogger boy. I've been watching Kimbo Slice and Russian traffic fights on youtube all day.

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 01:34 | 5124082 Seize Mars
Seize Mars's picture


Wed, 08/20/2014 - 23:11 | 5123791 Nick Jihad
Nick Jihad's picture

Better print up another $4 trillion now - once the dollar loses reserve-currency status, it will be too late!


Wed, 08/20/2014 - 23:53 | 5123921 bid the soldier...
bid the soldiers shoot's picture

Another $ 4 trillion?

Don't be such a cheapskate.  

We only have 20 aircraft carriers, for Christ sake.

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 23:12 | 5123797 Paracelsus
Paracelsus's picture

My Granny,rest her soul,used to classify apples and vegies and such,by their stability in storage thru the Winter.Everyone should be keeping a reserve of some sort.Course she lived thru a bank failure....

If one thinks about FDR's work programs and finance reforms,it is obvious that a primary goal was to  

avoid any revolutionary actions by the public.Both the carrot (WPA) and the stick (prisons) were applied.

Many thought of Bonny and Clyde as folk heroes for that era.At least they were fighting the bankers effectively.

A salutary lesson was how they confiscated private gold and then revalued it upwards by a third.Sneaky that...

A New Deal means that something fraudulent happened with the last round of cards,and in the interests

of social harmony,we will begin anew.If FDR meant to say something else,he would have phrased it another way.

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 00:07 | 5123953 bid the soldier...
bid the soldiers shoot's picture

Losing reserve currency status for the dollar will also be its spontaneous devaluation.  

This will be welcomed internationally, but I'm afraid it won't play well in Peoria. 

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 00:25 | 5123988 andrewp111
andrewp111's picture

What will precipitate the loss of reverse currency status? An oil shock could. ISIS taking over Saudi Arabia, perhaps?

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 00:36 | 5124008 yogibear
yogibear's picture

William Dudley of the New York Fed keeps pushing for dollar devaluation yet claims there is no inflation based on iPod prices. All these Federal Reserve Keynesian voodoo economic PhDs are BSers. They all know the fiat goes to 0 as inflation goes exponential.

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 08:40 | 5124507 withglee
withglee's picture

How should money be created?

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 09:21 | 5124679 Toolshed
Toolshed's picture

"How should money be created?"


You seem to be lost. Do some research. There is not an easy answer to that, and numerous opinions. First look into what actually constitutes money, as opposed to currency. They are not necessarily the same thing. USD is actually not money, like most fiat currency, it is a claim on money. That's why it says Federal Reserve NOTE on it. Money is a store of value. Currency exists only to facilitate trade. That should be enough to get you started, that is if you were earnest in your questioning.


Thu, 08/21/2014 - 09:52 | 5124769 withglee
withglee's picture

You are an avoider ... evidently just regurgitating talking points.

1) Tell me what "actually constitutes money".

2) Tell me what "actually constitutes currency".

3) If after that the contrast is not evident, tell me what is the obvious difference.

4) If the USD is just a "claim on money" ... and not money, what "is" the money it is making a claim on?

5) How was (should be) the money referenced in 4 created?

Regarding the ernestnest of my question, how about the ernestness of your non-answer?


Thu, 08/21/2014 - 09:55 | 5124791 Toolshed
Toolshed's picture

"You are an avoider ... evidently just regurgitating talking points."


And you are an instigating jackass. This is not Econ 101. Do your own research since you obviously have waaay too much time on your hands.


"Regarding the ernestnest of my question, how about the earnestness of you non-answer?"

My answers have been much more earnest than your question bait. How's this for earnest:

You are cordially invited to eat shit and die. Pinheaded troll.


Thu, 08/21/2014 - 09:57 | 5124804 withglee
withglee's picture

Typical seminar poster. They're given talking points but don't know what they mean. So when asked, they avoid. Pitifull. If this was Econ 101 material, it should be easy to explain. So explain away.

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 10:04 | 5124864 Toolshed
Toolshed's picture

" So explain away."

Please do.

You are a garden variety troll. You pose questions that you already have preconceived answers too. You are not trying to stimulate debate. You are trying to stimulate controversy. This makes you nothing but a disgusting shit talking TROLL. Good job!!!

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 10:13 | 5124911 withglee
withglee's picture

Even if that be the case, I am batting a thousand in turning up posters who complain about fiat money but can't answer these ultra-simple questions. There can be only one explanation ... they don't know the answer. It wasn't given to them in the talking points at the seminar.

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 10:32 | 5125007 Toolshed
Toolshed's picture

Trolls are always correct in their own world. Trolls never answer questions. Trolls only talk shit. You have been identified correctly as a troll.

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 01:09 | 5124053 Salsipuedes
Salsipuedes's picture

Alas, the Titanic turneth not on a dime. Two words: Scuba gear.

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 01:11 | 5124058 WAMO556
WAMO556's picture

Frank Herbert's book DUNE is metaphorically about the DOLLAR, never about oil.

The Spice must flow!!!!!

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 02:20 | 5124119 q99x2
q99x2's picture

Here is a problem to put things into perspective. There exists perception and all that is understood about perceptions by humans has snowballed over time into technology that may soon jeopardize all perceptions. Q99X2 tend to believe that everything else that exists within our universe, that is conscious, might take an interest in this human snowball of technological advancement.before it begins to perceive on its own.

Stating the problem another way. The oligarchs, war and the decline of civilization are about to become as meaningless as whether or not it will rain tomorrow because of a response by other things in the universe to the arrival of the singularity.

 Hope and change bitchez may you enjoy your toast tomorrow morning.

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 02:41 | 5124137 Aussiekiwi
Aussiekiwi's picture

'When a tin-foil-hat-wearing blog full of digital dickweeds suggest the dollar's reserve currency status is at best diminishing,'

Hey!, lol, 'digital dickweeds'.... he's talking about us isn't he?

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 06:07 | 5124243 hedgiex
hedgiex's picture

The authors from Fed , IMF & another Western Banker are masturbating. They expect Creditor Nations to agree to any reforms that they propose anchored on the past glory that US is the Global Economic power.

The trust in the dollar has been lost through profligacy and indiscipline and any Creditor is no fool to continue to trust in a failing currency coupled with idea that the control of the trust in a fiat currency should still reside with Debtors.

Money as a store of value for a globalized economy is not based on trade flows alone. Investment flows are as important as trade flows. This is going to make it interesting for global markets to decide on the value of a fiat currency with Central Banks having less influence. The decision by the markets will have the inputs (real demand) of the creditor nations.

US is so f***ed and yet still so arrogant in the global stage.

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 06:44 | 5124264 vyeung
vyeung's picture

very well said!

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 07:47 | 5124367 SmallerGovNow2
SmallerGovNow2's picture

Fiat paper and digits on a computer as a store of value is not based on sound logic...

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 08:39 | 5124496 withglee
withglee's picture

How should money be created?

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 06:19 | 5124251 barre-de-rire
barre-de-rire's picture

sick of  flood BS...


notin gonna hapen, alice stayed rabit fucked in wonderland,  pass on that.

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 06:24 | 5124254 SMC
SMC's picture
"Could The Dollar Lose Its Reserve Status?"

Not soon enough...

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 07:59 | 5124385 ekm1
ekm1's picture

By the time Obama finishes his term in Jan 2017, USD could lose its status already assuming this rate of rejection stays the same or get accelerated.


I see no reason for the Rate of USD Rejection slowing down, unless Congress drains dollars from the system and US Military re-starts interventions, which are both vetoed by Obama.


So, two options:

- Either USD dies as world currency

- Or Obama falls before his term is over.


My bet?

Obama falls before his term is over, if dollars not drained and if he vetoes US Military interventions.

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 09:15 | 5124638 Toolshed
Toolshed's picture

I guess I missed the paragraph about the negative effects of using your currency's reserve status as a tool for extortion. But, I guess that is ok since as everyone knows financial policy and politics are totally seperate and unrelated things.

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 09:27 | 5124695 Youri Carma
Youri Carma's picture

Frankly a lot of yada, yada as if they can do anything about it. They can't. At least nothing in the way as described here.

Dollars outside the U.S. are beyond their control. And since the U.S. actively alienating the world around them with their foreign policies it's exactly the opposite.

Russia Central Bank Calls On Banks to Establish Alternative to SWIFT

Thu, 08/21/2014 - 09:49 | 5124784 Hellone
Hellone's picture




Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!