Marshall’s “The Total Currency Needed by a Country”

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The primary focus of the Alfred Marshall’s article “The Total Currency Needed by a Country” is the importance of currency for the country in regards to what, precisely, makes it so valuable and “taken seriously” (83). In other words, what makes currency effective? The answer, according to the article, would most likely be that the possession of currency is implicative of value, convenience, demand, and “a ready command of purchasing power” (Marshall 80). Marshall implies the old adage of ‘money is power’ holds true. The value of a country’s currency influences the health of its economy, which owes much to the circulation of the currency. This results in “the total value of a country’s currency, multiplied into the average number of times of its changing hands for business purposes” (Marshall 85) becoming a reasonably accurate indicator of how often a business runs money. Of course, it is important to consider that a specific currency is not always king because “the rule for one man may not serve well for another” (Marshall 89). Currency can essentially be transformed into a commodity, which indicates that there are certainly similarities to be drawn between resources and currency. However, depending on the amount that one decides to have resources “in the form of currency” (Marshall 87), it might be subject to change insofar as “population and wealth” (Marshall 87), which absolutely holds some sway over how business is made. Currency is a mutable substance that is near symbiotic with the society itself. Reportedly, “general commercial confidence and activity” (Marshall 88) are at the whim of exterior forces such as the FED despite currency being so determinant of purchasing power. Unmistakably, though, there is an inextricable relationship between the volume of currency and prices. For some, it may still be important to have their “resources in the form of currency” (Marshall 87) or vice versa, although, there is no typicality beyond consistently increasing quantity resulting in depreciating value.

Work Cited

Marshall, Alfred. "The Total Currency Needed by a Country." Money Credit & Commerce. London: Macmillan, 1923. 80-93. Print.