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Goldsmith Lecture - Barry Eichengreen

Professor Eichengreen’s lecture will examine the role of national currencies in international transactions: why the dollar is used so widely in cross-border transactions, even those that do not involve the United States; and whether the dollar’s status as international currency prima inter pares is likely to be challenged by another unit, perhaps the euro or the Chinese renminbi, in the near or even distant future.  Unlike other recent studies, which have sought to draw lessons from very recent history, this lecture will consider the very long run: from the Greek silver drachma, the Roman gold aureus and the Byzantine Solidus to the Genoese genoin, the Florentine florin and the Dutch guilder, before turning to more recent experience with the pound sterling and U.S. dollar.  While the long sweep of history suggests some international role for the euro and the renminbi, it underscores that the Euro Area and China still lack some of the key characteristics, political as well as economic, that make currencies attractive for international use.

Barry Eichengreen is the George C. Pardee and Helen N. Pardee Professor of Economics and Professor of Political Science at the University of California, Berkeley, where he has taught since 1987. He is a Research Associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research (Cambridge, Massachusetts) and Research Fellow of the Centre for Economic Policy Research (London, England). In 1997-98 he was Senior Policy Advisor at the International Monetary Fund. He is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (class of 1997). Professor Eichengreen has an international reputation for his research on financial and monetary history. He is a respected commentator on macroeconomic policies, writing a monthly column for Project Syndicate and quarterly for Caixin (China) and Finanz und Wirtschaft (Switzerland). His most recent books are Hall of Mirrors: The Great Depression, the Great Recession, and the Uses and Misuses of History (Oxford, 2015) and International Currencies Past, Present and Future: Two Views from Economic History (with Arnaud Mehl and Livia Chitu) (Princeton, forthcoming).

Start date:

5.30pm Thursday, 27 Oct 2016

End date:

7pm Thursday, 27 Oct 2016


Innovations Building 124, Eggleston Road, ANU


Professor Barry Eichengreen

RSVP link:

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