On the Optimum Quantity of Money

Quarterly Journal of Austrian Economics, Vol. 7, No. 1, pp. 39-52, Spring 2004

14 Pages Posted: 8 Jul 2011

See all articles by Walter E. Block

Walter E. Block

Loyola University New Orleans - Joseph A. Butt, S.J. College of Business

William Barnett

Loyola University New Orleans

Date Written: 2004

Abstract

It is pretty well established within Austrian economics that the optimum quantity of money is whatever level is established at any given time. The logical implication of this claim is that any amount of the commodity that intermediates trade will do as well as any other in acquitting this task. This being the case, there is no social or even private gain to be obtained by anyone adding to the money stock.

The present paper challenges this view, but from within the praxeological tradition. That is, we shall argue that although prominent Austrian economists have indeed made this argument, they are incorrect from their own basic perspective, which is shared in full by the present authors. Our thesis, in contrast to theirs, is that “more is better,” or, more strictly speaking, at the very least it is possible that additional stocks of money can make a positive contribution to economic welfare.

Suggested Citation

Block, Walter E. and Barnett, William, On the Optimum Quantity of Money (2004). Quarterly Journal of Austrian Economics, Vol. 7, No. 1, pp. 39-52, Spring 2004. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1881047

Walter E. Block (Contact Author)

Loyola University New Orleans - Joseph A. Butt, S.J. College of Business ( email )

6363 St. Charles Avenue
Box 15, Miller 321
New Orleans, LA 70118
United States
(504) 864-7944 (Phone)
(504) 864-7970 (Fax)

William Barnett

Loyola University New Orleans ( email )

526 Pine Street
New Orleans, LA 70118
United States

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