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Money in the Western Legal TraditionMiddle Ages to Bretton Woods$
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David Fox and Wolfgang Ernst

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780198704744

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198704744.001.0001

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Putting the ‘System’ in the International Monetary System

Putting the ‘System’ in the International Monetary System

Chapter:
(p.595) 27 Putting the ‘System’ in the International Monetary System
Source:
Money in the Western Legal Tradition
Author(s):

Michael Bordo

Angela Redish

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198704744.003.0027

This chapter traces the evolution of the International Monetary System (IMS) from the early nineteenth century to the present. In the 1850s, the unit of account in each of the major powers was tied to a fixed weight of one or two precious metals: gold and silver. In response to the demands of increased international trade, the international gold standard was introduced in the 1880s. The two world wars, however, led to the breakdown of the gold standard. After the Second World War, the major powers decided to form the Bretton Woods System (BWS), which created the International Monetary Fund (IMF). But just like the gold standard, the BWS collapsed in a series of crises from 1968 to 1971. The BWS was then succeeded by the managed floating non-system, a system similar to the gold standard and used is used in the Eurozone.

Keywords:   International Monetary System, international gold standard, Bretton Woods system, Eurozone, major powers, gold, silver, international trade, managed floating non-system

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