Pierre-Cyrille Hautcoeur

Paris School of Economics
48, Boulevard Jourdan
75014 Paris, France
and École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales,

E-Mail: EmailAddress: hidden: you can email any NBER-related person as first underscore last at nber dot org
Institutional Affiliations: Paris School of Economics and Ecole des hautes études en sciences sociales

NBER Working Papers and Publications

May 2014Floating a "Lifeboat": The Banque de France and the Crisis of 1889
with Angelo Riva, Eugene N. White: w20083
When faced with a run on a "systemically important" but insolvent bank in 1889, the Banque de France pre-emptively organized a lifeboat to ensure that depositors were protected and an orderly liquidation could proceed. To protect the Banque from losses on its lifeboat loan, a guarantee syndicate was formed, penalizing those who had participated in the copper speculation that had caused the crisis bringing the bank down. Creation of the syndicate and other actions were consistent with mitigating the moral hazard from such an intervention. This episode contrasts the advice given by Bagehot to the Bank of England to counter a panic by lending freely at a high rate on good collateral, allowing insolvent institutions to fail.

Published: Hautcoeur, Pierre-Cyrille & Riva, Angelo & White, Eugene N., 2014. "Floating a “lifeboat”: The Banque de France and the crisis of 1889," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(C), pages 104-119. citation courtesy of

July 2003Why didn't France follow the British Stabilization after World War One?
with Michael D. Bordo: w9860
We show that the size of the public debt, the budget deficit and the monetary overhang made it impossible for France to stabilize its price level and return to the pre-war parity immediately after World War I, even on the anti-keynesian assumption that a stabilization would not have had any negative effects on real income. The reason for the immediate postwar inflation then was not mismanaged policy but a wise choice in the French context. Nevertheless, a stabilization at a devalued franc which would have been substantially higher than the rate achieved by Poincar‚‚ in 1926 was historically possible in early 1924, and it would likely have benefited not only France but the entire international monetary system.
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