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The Role of the Gold Standard in Keynesian Monetary Theory

Scott Sumner

Economic Inquiry, 1999, vol. 37, issue 3, 527-40

Abstract: This paper shows that many of the most distinctive features of Keynesian economics are best understood if one views the General Theory as essentially a gold standard model. A close examination of Keynes's statements on contemporaneous policy issues suggests that the gold standard had a profound impact on his views on monetary policy effectiveness. In particular, I show that the liquidity trap has been widely misunderstood. Finally, I argue that post-General Theory developments in Keynesian economics are best understood as a response to the inapplicability of Keynes's original message to a world of fiat money regimes. Copyright 1999 by Oxford University Press.

Date: 1999
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