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Did doubling reserve requirements cause the recession of 1937-1938? : a microeconomic approach

Author: Charles W Calomiris; Joseph R Mason; David C Wheelock; National Bureau of Economic Research.
Publisher: Cambridge, Mass. : National Bureau of Economic Research, ©2011.
Series: Working paper series (National Bureau of Economic Research), no. 16688.
Edition/Format:   eBook : Document : EnglishView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
In 1936-37, the Federal Reserve doubled the reserve requirements imposed on member banks. Ever since, the question of whether the doubling of reserve requirements increased reserve demand and produced a contraction of money and credit, and thereby helped to cause the recession of 1937-1938, has been a matter of controversy. Using microeconomic data to gauge the fundamental reserve demands of Fed member banks, we  Read more...
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Genre/Form: History
Material Type: Document, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: Charles W Calomiris; Joseph R Mason; David C Wheelock; National Bureau of Economic Research.
OCLC Number: 697528991
Notes: "January 2011."
Title from http://www.nber.org/papers/16688 viewed Jan. 19, 2011.
Description: 1 online resource (51 p.) : ill.
Series Title: Working paper series (National Bureau of Economic Research), no. 16688.
Responsibility: Charles W. Calomiris, Joseph Mason, David Wheelock.

Abstract:

In 1936-37, the Federal Reserve doubled the reserve requirements imposed on member banks. Ever since, the question of whether the doubling of reserve requirements increased reserve demand and produced a contraction of money and credit, and thereby helped to cause the recession of 1937-1938, has been a matter of controversy. Using microeconomic data to gauge the fundamental reserve demands of Fed member banks, we find that despite being doubled, reserve requirements were not binding on bank reserve demand in 1936 and 1937, and therefore could not have produced a significant contraction in the money multiplier. To the extent that increases in reserve demand occurred from 1935 to 1937, they reflected fundamental changes in the determinants of reserve demand and not changes in reserve requirements.

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