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Romanian Echoes of the Currency versus Banking Debate – From Unification to the Creation of the National Bank (2016-2017)

Field of study: Economics, Economic History, History of Economic Thought

In this paper we take a new look at how the modern Romanian monetary and banking system took shape between the Unification of the Principalities and the founding of the National Bank of Romania in 1880. We are primarily interested in showing that the ideas that influenced its creation were richer than previous historical accounts imply. For this purpose, we first take a look at the Western debates between the Currency School and the Banking School, and in particular at the ideas of French participants. Against this background, we will then evoke the Romanian echoes of this great 19th century controversy.

Keywords: Currency School, Banking School, central bank, free banking, gold standard, bimetallism, fiduciary media, paper money

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