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Working Paper
Beyond the Doomsday Economics of “Proof-of-Work” in Cryptocurrencies

This paper discusses the economics of how Bitcoin achieves data immutability, and thus payment finality, via costly computations, i.e., ?proof-of-work.? Further, it explores what the future might hold for cryptocurrencies modelled on this type of consensus algorithm. The conclusions are, first, that Bitcoin counterfeiting via ?double-spending? attacks is inherently profitable, making payment finality based on proof-of-work extremely expensive. Second, the transaction market cannot generate an adequate level of ?mining? income via fees as users free-ride on the fees of other transactions in a ...
Globalization Institute Working Papers , Paper 355

Working Paper
Liquidity, Capital Pledgeability and Inflation Redistribution

We study the redistributive effects of expected inflation in a microfounded monetary model with heterogeneous discount factors and collateral constraints. In equilibrium, this heterogeneity leads to borrowing and lending. Model assumptions also guarantee a tractable distribution of money and capital holdings. Several results emerge from our analysis. First, in this framework expected inflation is detrimental to capital accumulation. Second, expected inflation affects borrowing and lending when collateral constraints are present, thus also inducing redistributive effects through credit. Third, ...
Working Papers , Paper 21-26

Journal Article
Self-Insurance and the Risk-Sharing Role of Money

Overcoming the lack of coincidence of wants is a well-acknowledged role of money. In this review, I illustrate that the use of money also promotes risk-sharing in the society: when individuals hold money, it helps other individuals mitigate their own liquidity risks.
Economic Quarterly , Issue 1Q , Pages 35-52

Working Paper
Money, Banking, and Old-School Historical Economics

We review developments in the history of money, banking, and financial intermediation over the last twenty years. We focus on studies of financial development, including the role of regulation and the history of central banking. We also review the literature of banking and financial crises. This area has been largely unaffected by the so-called new econometric methods that seek to prove causality in reduced form settings. We discuss why historical macroeconomics is less amenable to such methods, discuss the underlying concepts of causality, and emphasize that models remain the backbone of our ...
Working Paper Series , Paper WP-2020-28

Working Paper
Rehypothecation and Liquidity

We develop a dynamic general equilibrium monetary model where a shortage of collateral and incomplete markets motivate the formation of credit relationships and the rehypothecation of assets. Rehypothecation improves resource allocation because it permits liquidity to flow where it is most needed. The liquidity benefits associated with rehypothecation are shown to be more important in high-inflation (high interest rate) regimes. Regulations restricting the practice are shown to have very different consequences depending on how they are designed. Assigning collateral to segregated accounts, as ...
Working Papers , Paper 2015-3

Payment networks in a search model of money

In a simple search model of money, we study a special kind of memory that gives rise to an arrangement resembling a payment network. Specifically, we assume that agents can pay a cost to access a central database that tracks payments made and received. Incentives must be provided to agents to access the central database and to produce when they participate in this arrangement. We also study policies that can loosen these incentive constraints. In particular, we show that a "no-surcharge" rule has good incentive properties. Finally, we compare our model with that of Cavalcanti and Wallace.
Staff Reports , Paper 263

Bitcoin as money?

The spectacular rise late last year in the price of Bitcoin, the dominant virtual currency, has attracted much public attention as well as scholarly interest. This policy brief discusses how some features of Bitcoin, as designed and executed to date, have hampered its ability to perform the functions required of a fiat money??as a medium of exchange, unit of account, and store of value. Furthermore, we document how various forms of intermediaries have emerged and evolved within the Bitcoin network, particularly noting the convergence toward concentrated processing, both on and off the ...
Current Policy Perspectives , Paper 14-4

Working Paper
Cash-in-the-Market Pricing in a Model with Money and Over-the-Counter Financial Markets

Entrepreneurs need cash to finance their real investments. Since cash is costly to hold, entrepreneurs will underinvest. If entrepreneurs can access financial markets prior to learning about an investment opportunity, they can sell some of their less liquid assets for cash and, as a result, invest at a higher level. When financial markets are over-the-counter, the price that the entrepreneur receives for the assets that he sells depends on the amount of liquidity (cash) that is in the OTC market: Greater levels of liquidity lead to higher asset prices. Since asset prices are linked to ...
Working Paper Series , Paper WP-2013-24

U. S. consumer cash use, 2012 and 2015: an introduction to the Diary of Consumer Payment Choice

U.S. consumer cash payments averaged 26 percent of all U.S. consumer payments by number (volume share) from 2008 to 2015, according to the Survey of Consumer Payment Choice (SCPC), and were essentially unchanged between 2012 and 2015. New estimates from the Diary of Consumer Payment Choice (DCPC) show that the volume share of consumer cash payments is higher than estimated in the SCPC and suggest that the cash volume share was 8 percentage points lower in 2015 than in 2012. The DCPC most likely does not provide an accurate estimate of the actual change in the cash volume share, however, due ...
Research Data Report , Paper 17-6

Discussion Paper
What Makes a Safe Asset Safe?

Over the last decade, the concept of “safe assets” has received increasing attention, from regulators and private market participants, as well as researchers. This attention has led to the uncovering of some important details and nuances of what makes an asset “safe” and why it matters. In this blog post, we provide a review of the different aspects of safe assets, discuss possible reasons why they may be beneficial for investors, and give concrete examples of what these assets are in practice.
Liberty Street Economics , Paper 20171127


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