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Economic Quarterly

Spring 1993

Central Banking: Then and Now

J. Alfred Broaddus, Jr.

A comparison of the Fed’s efforts to restore price stability in the 1920s and 1980s shows that considerable progress was made in both periods, despite the absence of an explicit, unambiguous price stability mandate at either time. Whereas the existence of the gold standard reinforced and legitimized the Fed's efforts in the earlier period, no such reinforcement exists currently.

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