The Gold Standard
As Europe faces economic meltdown, Simon Jack asks if printing yet more money is the only way out of trouble. Would our financial system be safer if currencies were backed by gold?
As banks collapse and governments run out of money, the popular solution is to print more and more and expand bank balance sheets. But is there another way of fixing our economy? Would the financial system be more stable if each pound in our pocket was backed by gold? The Today programme's business presenter Simon Jack meets the so-called 'gold bugs' who predict the collapse of the paper system as well as those who argue that a return to the gold standard would be a huge mistake. Which makes more sense - placing your faith in a yellow metal or in money created at the push of a button?
Interviewees include ...
Detlev Schichter: fellow at the free market think tank the Cobden Centre and author of the book Paper Money Collapse: The Folly of Elastic Money and the Coming Monetary Breakdown
John Butler: Chief investment officer at Amphora (an independent investment and advisory firm in London) and author of The Golden Revolution: How to prepare for the coming global gold standard
Lord Skidelsky: Cross-bench peer, Emeritus Professor of Political Economy at the University of Warwick and biographer of the economist John Maynard Keynes
Dani Rodrik: Professor of International Political Economy at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government and author of The Globalization Paradox: Democracy and the future of the World Economy
Barry Eichengreen: Professor of Economics and Political Science at the University of California, Berkeley and author of Exorbitant Privilege - The Rise and Fall of the Dollar and the Future of the International Monetary System
Dr DeAnne Julius: chairman of Chatham House and former member of the Bank of England's monetary committee
Lord Lawson: Conservative former Chancellor of the Exchequer
Producer: Helen Grady.