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The database: definitions, institutional framework, data and charts

Studying economic history using long data series first involves selecting the period that best corresponds to the subject of analysis (in this case, the influence of official monetary regulations and market arbitrage on the international settlement system); then identifying the relevant variables so that the analysis can be carried out on the basis of the operating rules of the time; and lastly, homogenising the data from different economic zones.

Therefore, we identified 11 exchange rates (short and long) between the three markets of Paris, London and Hamburg, and the six monetary bullion prices (gold and silver coins or ingots) on the same three markets.

As the journals from the period that specialised in publishing market prices were not printed with the same regularity and intervals, we aligned the frequency to the lowest of the three, i.e. London, published twice a week.

Connecting these variables – exchange rates and monetary metal prices – is useful as it relates to monetary rules on the official definition of national units of account and the role of "Superior Banks"

The overall data series table is now available for consultation. It incorporates 7,720 dates for the different variables, all homogenised so that the same, decimalised unit of measurement is applied for the whole period (1800-1873). Furthermore, bullion prices for the three markets have been made directly comparable by converting the units of weight and purities into kilograms with a purity ratio of 1000:1000. This overall table is also broken down into eight sub-tables, distinguishing the exchange rates and bullion prices for each city. All of the series are presented in a chart

Updated on: 05/04/2018 15:17