¿Deben los bancos comerciales seguir la real bills doctrine? Breve comentario en Sound Money Project sobre el intercambio entre J. R. Rallo y Larry White.
So what then is a real bill? A real bill is a bill that is backed by a real good. If I produce bread, for instance, then as a producer I can issue a bill payable on a date after I expect to have sold the bread, which is still under production. Banks, under such a doctrine, should then constrain themselves to invest in this type of bills. In so doing, they would only offer credit to real market activities.
Following a recent interview, Juan R. Rallo and Lawrence H. White engaged in an interesting exchange about this issue (see here, here, and here.) Rallo argues that the RBD is a prudential banking policy- in short, that banks under free banking should follow a version of the RBD to maintain monetary stability or, more precisely, to avoid discoordination by borrowing short and lending long. This is problematic, the argument goes, because the market loses liquidity: one bank can gain liquidity by selling a long-term mortgage, for instance, at the expense of someone else losing liquidity as well.
Let me offer a few critical comments to what is my best understating of what is being argued.