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Charles Goodhart

Charles Goodhart is Norman Sosnow Professor of Banking and Finance at the London School of Economics. He has served as a monetary economist and as Chief Adviser at the Bank of England. He is the author of The Evolution of Central Banks.

Titles by This Author

As economic advisor to the Bank of England for many years, C. A. E. Goodhart is uniquely positioned to assess the role of the central bank in the modern financial system. This book brings together twenty-one of his previously published articles dealing with the changing functions of central banks over time, recent efforts to maintain price stability, and debates over specific financial regulation proposals in the UK.Although the current day-to-day operations of central banks are subject to continuous comment and frequent criticism, their structural role within the economic system as a whole has generally been accepted without much question, despite several attempts by economists in recent decades to challenge the value of the institution. C. A. E. Goodhart brings his knowledge of both the theoretical arguments and the actual working of central banks to bear in these essays. Part I looks at the general purposes and functions of central banks within the financial system and their evolution over time. Part II concentrates on the current objectives and operations of central banks, and the maintenance of price stability in particular. Part III analyzes the broader issues of financial regulation.

Significantly rewritten and updated, this well known textbook covers the whole of monetary economics, from the role of money to international monetary relationships. It is unique in linking theoretical findings to policy issues and events, and extends conventional analyses of financial intermediation and monetary theory.

Money, Information, and Uncertainty bridges the gap between introductory textbooks and the latest journal articles, clarifying the macroeconomic significance of a series of innovative developments in the economics of information and the analysis of financial markets and institutions. Goodhart brings out the key implications of ideas such as information asymmetries and market-completion services for problems relating to money and banking, making it easier for banking specialists who don't follow the financial literature to understand where their field is moving.

The book's 18 chapters are organized around the theme that monetary phenomena can be properly understood only against a background of uncertainty and information costs, and around the premise that portfolio theory is the most appropriate analytical tool.

The first 9 chapters focus on microeconomic issues, such as the role of and the demand for money and the role and functions of banks and of the Central Bank. The final 9 chapters take up macroeconomic issues, such as the transmission mechanisms of monetary policy and international monetary problems. Chapters new to this edition cover the nature of markets, credit rationing, the functions of central banks, financial regulation the determination of interest rates, and floating exchange rates.

The Evolution of Central Banks employs a wide range of historical evidence and reassesses current monetary analysis to argue that the development of non-profit-maximizing and noncompetitive central banks to supervise and regulate the commercial banking system fulfils a necessary and natural function.

Goodhart surveys the case for free banking, examines the key role of the clearing house in the evolution of the central bank, and investigates bank expansion and fluctuation in the context of the clearing house mechanism. He concludes that it is the noncompetitive aspect of the central bank that is crucial to the performance of its role. Goodhart addresses the questions of deposit insurance and takes up the "club theory" approach to the central bank. Included in the historical study of their origins are 8 European central banks, the Bank of Japan, the Bank of England, and the Federal Reserve Board of the United States.

Charles Goodhart was appointed to the newly established Norman Sosnow Chair of Banking and Finance at the London School of Economics in 1985. For the previous 17 years he served as a monetary economist at the Bank of England, becoming a Chief Adviser in 1980.