How the Puritans Invented Modern Currency
Featured Events | May 03, 2023 | Gabelli School of Business
Before the American Revolution, settlers in the Massachusetts colony planned to raid Quebec City and use their loot to pay their soldiers. After the invasion fell through, the colony created a form of payment for its military, resulting in the first currency that would later help them separate from England.
Dror Goldberg, Ph.D., a senior faculty member in the Department of Management and Economics at The Open University of Israel, told the story of modern money in North America during the 17th century in Easy Money: American Puritans and the Invention of Modern Currency. As the Massachusetts colony distanced from England, the need to formalize a monetary exchange and print local tender emerged. In a webinar co-sponsored by the Gabelli Center for Global Security Analysis, CFA Society New York, and the Museum of American Finance, Goldberg traced how this method of creating currency grew into the system we know today.
Throughout history, some economists have explored the feasibility of a global currency. Goldberg said while he could see the potential, more than likely, it wouldn’t come to fruition.
“It seems possible. For example, the United States is a federation, and the European Union is a federation that is unified. If the global government can accept this [currency] for its own taxes, it could work.” However, he added, “I think many people would be afraid of it, so I don’t think it will ever come up.”