Bring back the Bradbury Pound

As if Quantitative Easing wasn’t enough, the Blogosphere is buzzing with the notion that the Government should use a financial aid tactic called the Bradbury Pound.

Apparently in the summer of 1914, the Government issued Treasury notes signed by John Bradbury to avoid a run on the banks. It was literally a licence to print new money for infrastructure investment.

Reviving this notion seems a bit of a crackpot idea to me, but, people are putting a lot of effort into making a case for it in the run up to its 100th anniversary.

Whilst Government spending on infrastructure is probably more desirable than just expenditure on current activities, surely, total expenditure still has to be controlled and restrained?

There are those who want the Treasury to start issuing interest-free money, based upon “ wealth, integrity and potential for the country”.

They say such an initiative would completely remove the hold the banks have over the nation and would kick-start a productive economy.

Whilst it is galling that at present Banks appear more interested in building up their own balance sheets and profits than helping businesses, the alternative of some sort of nationalised bank is even more worrying to me, as no government has ever shown it is capable of running a business. But, there is a politically driven petition going the rounds to raise 1000 signatures to get a debate in the House of Commons.

In my opinion one of the best things the Government has done lately to make business life easier is to make funds available for Peer to Peer lending groups rather than just to the banks. I suggest you check this out too. That makes more sense to me. For details about this Bradbury business check out the rather jingoistic stuff on the internet. There’s a good bit of video footage on YouTube above…

carla delaneyCarla Delaney Communications
Business Writer of the Year Award Winner
01628 526456

4 thoughts on “Bring back the Bradbury Pound

  1. Aren’t QE and the Bradbury Pound the same thing with different names?
    Aren’t Banks building their balance sheets ’cause they have to both to stop the stupidity of the past being possible and because its ‘the law’?
    How can we believe that banks should go back to stupid lending levels and still want them to be more secure and stop stupid lending?
    peer-to-peer lending is great – check out the returns on ZOPA, a well established player in that market…


  2. Although there is a good deal of loose talk about ‘printing money’, in fact all money is ‘printed’ or otherwise created by some means or other. As Aristotle remarked all those years ago … money exists by law and not by nature.
    The issue therefore is how much money is ‘printed’ (given a certain velocity of circulation) … can we use a more neutral term and say ‘issued’ … by whom, to whose benefit, and how that process is controlled institutionally.
    Therefore can anyone of those who talk on about ‘printing’ money tell me what is the difference between money issued by the government and money issued out of debt by a cartel of private banks (it goes under various names … ‘M3’, ‘M4’, ‘Broad Money,’Debt Money.’ ‘credit money’, the Chinese Peoples Bank correctly calls it ‘quasi money’)?
    The Chinese operate a much higher monetary base, backed by a full quiver of credit controls, not just interest rates. Most of this base money is then leveraged through a network of local, provincial and development banks at often nominal rates of interest. The result is there for all to see!!!
    The so-called ‘Bradbury Pound’ is no more than an effort to emulate the Chinese in a British way.
    Currencies issued out of debt have to reach a point of implosion at some stage. This is what this crisis has been about.


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