Last updated on: 1/17/2013 | Author:

Michael D. Bordo, PhD Biography

Professor of Economics at Rutgers University
NC to the question "Should the United States Return to a Gold Standard?"

“The gold standard was a commitment by participating countries to fix the prices of their domestic currencies in terms of a specified amount of gold. National money and other forms of money (bank deposits and notes) were freely converted into gold at the fixed price… The United States, though formally on a bimetallic (gold and silver) standard, switched to gold de facto in 1834 and de jure in 1900 when Congress passed the Gold Standard Act. In 1834, the United States fixed the price of gold at $20.67 per ounce, where it remained until 1933. Other major countries joined the gold standard in the 1870s. The period from 1880 to 1914 is known as the classical gold standard. During that time, the majority of countries adhered (in varying degrees) to gold…

Between 1946 and 1971, countries operated under the Bretton Woods system. Under this further modification of the gold standard, most countries settled their international balances in U.S. dollars, but the U.S. government promised to redeem other central banks’ holdings of dollars for gold at a fixed rate of thirty-five dollars per ounce… Finally, on August 15, 1971, President Richard M. Nixon announced that the United States would no longer redeem currency for gold. This was the final step in abandoning the gold standard.”

“Gold Standard,” (accessed Nov. 11, 2013)

Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Professor of Economics, Rutgers University, 1989-present
  • Director, Center for Monetary and Financial History, Rutgers University, 1990-present
  • Research Associate, National Bureau of Economic Research, 1982-present
  • Consultant, World Bank, 2000-2001, 2007-2008
  • Former Visiting Scholar, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, St. Louis, and Cleveland
  • Former Visiting Scholar, International Monetary Fund
  • Pitt Professor of American History and Institutions, Cambridge University, 2006-2007
  • Visiting Scholar, Swiss National Bank, 2004-2005
  • Visiting Scholar, Bank of England, 2004
  • Visiting Fellow, Princeton University, 2002
  • Visiting Scholar, Board of Governors, Federal Reserve System, 1994, 1998
  • Professor of Economics, University of South Carolina, 1981-1989
  • Visiting Professor, Carnegie Mellon University, 1987-1988
  • Visiting Associate Professor, University of California at Los Angeles, 1980-1981
  • Assistant Professor, Carleton University, 1969-1975
  • Education:
  • PhD, University of Chicago, 1972
  • MSc, Economics, London School of Economics, 1965
  • BA, McGill University, 1963
  • Other:
  • Member, Board of Directors, North American Journal of Economics, 2006-present
  • Associate Editor, International Journal of Central Banking, 2004-present
  • Member, Board of Editors, Journal of International Money and Finance, 2001-present
  • Vice President, Economic History Association, 2003-2004
  • Research Staff to Executive Director, US Gold Commission, 1981-1982