Special Reports

The U.S. Federal Budget as a Household Budget [Infographic]

The U.S. Federal Budget as a Household Budget [Infographic]The U.S. Federal Budget can be difficult for the average American to relate to since it deals in billions and trillions of dollars. This infographic scales those numbers down to a more familiar and manageable size to effectively display the instability of the current economic situation. With the U.S. only days away from going over the fiscal cliff, it's important to understand just how vital a return to a solid, stable gold standard dollar is to the country's future prosperity. …
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Indexed Growth of Above Ground Gold Supply, and Global Economy

Indexed Growth of Above Ground Gold Supply, and Global Economy
The chart reveals that the supply of gold is tightly correlated with economic growth over the last two centuries. As a monetary standard, gold promotes both long-run price stability and real economic growth. The former holds insofar as the supply of gold is limited. Former United States Gold Commissioner Lewis Lehrman explained that, "...total new gold production in any single year is only a minor fraction of the total supply of gold in existence--about 2 percent." Because of the costs of gold production, total supply is both limited and stable. A dollar backed by gold would have the same …Read more

What Does the Historical Evidence Tell Us About the Stability of the Dollar?

What Does the Historical Evidence Tell Us About the Stability of the Dollar? It shows that the stability of the U.S. dollar has varied widely in its history. This variation is explained by two factors: the monetary standard chosen for the dollar, and whether other countries have simultaneously used cash and securities payable in dollars as their own reserves, even as their monetary standard itself (i.e., official reserve currencies in place of gold.) The United States has alternated between two kinds of standard money: inconvertible paper money and some precious metal (first silver, then gold). The dollar was an inconvertible paper money during and after the …Read more

The U.S. Trade Deficit

The U.S. Trade Deficit A trade deficit occurs when a country buys more goods and services from its trading partners around the world than it sells to them.  Under the gold standard, such deficits literally are impossible to sustain.  When a country consumes more than it produces prices automatically adjust around the world to make it more expensive for it to consume -- and more profitable for it to produce, allowing the system to rectify the imbalance in gentle, almost imperceptible, ways.  The Bretton Woods type system thwarted such automatic, daily, adjustments -- leading to bumpier and more …Read more

Federal Government Budget Surplus or Deficit

Federal Government Budget Surplus or Deficit Having a gold standard leads to gentle cycles of deficit and surplus in federal expenditure.  Once the stability provided by the gold standard -- which acts as the gyroscope of the international economy -- is lost, a strong bias to government budget deficits of increasing scope becomes evident.  The surplus of the 1997 era makes it notable, however, that monetary policy is a critical component to prosperity.  It is, as a technical matter, virtually impossible consistently to maintain the requisite level of stability under the International Dollar Standard. SOURCE: The White …Read more

Kathleen M. Packard, Publisher
Ralph J. Benko, Editor

In Memoriam
Professor Jacques Rueff

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