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Electronic theses and dissertations repository

 

Tesi etd-04102014-171039


Thesis type
Tesi di laurea magistrale
Author
ROMENI, ALESSIO
URN
etd-04102014-171039
Title
John Law, an anachronistic economist? Theory, monetary policy, fiat money and...bitcoin
Struttura
ECONOMIA E MANAGEMENT
Corso di studi
SCIENZE ECONOMICHE
Supervisors
relatore Prof. Nuvolari, Alessandro
Parole chiave
  • paper money
  • Missisipi System
  • John Law
  • bitcoin
  • fiat money
Data inizio appello
30/04/2014;
Consultabilità
Completa
Riassunto analitico
This work aims to shed lights on a writer and politician of 18th century judged as a fool, a gambler and a swindler by his contemporaries but who nowadays may be considered instead one of the first monetary economists in the history of economic thought: John Law.

Using the current stream of literature on this topic, as well as several other chronicles, this work will present the historical facts that brought John Law to become the financial minister of France in 1720 and to put in place a system, the Missisipi System, where he had the rare chance to translate his theories into economic policies, threatening the very foundations of the ancien régime. After elucidating the reasons of the collapse of the System, we will focus on the economic explanations of this failure, showing under which conditions Law’s scheme could have been sustainable.
A deep analysis of his early writings and of his later memoires will be carried on in order to assess the discrepancies between Law-“the economist” and Law-“the policy-maker”. A further study will be conducted to inspect the reasons of Law’s uncelebrated role in the subsequent history of economic thought and to present the modernity of his ideas regarding the nature and the role of money, with a particular attention to financial securities and paper and fiat money.

The final part will build a singular parallel between Law’s revolutionary experiment and Bitcoin, the most recent and influential attempt to reshape the current payment system, explaining both the similarities and the underlying economic differences.
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