International Monetary Policy: Exchange Rates and Gold Policy
WE SHALL divide our discussion of America's postwar international monetary policy into the following major subjects: (1) exchange-rate stabilization, (2) gold policy, (3) stabilization credits, (4) exchange controls, (5) the sterling area, and (6) intra-European payments arrangements. The first two of these closely related subjects will be dealt with in this chapter, while the remainder will be taken up in Chaps. 10 and 11, together with a summary of these chapters at the end of Chap. 11.
Although much of our postwar international monetary policy centers around the International Monetary Fund, the Fund is by no means the sole instrument through which American policy is expressed in this field.1 We must consider the Anglo-American financial agreement, the United States Exchange Stabilization Fund, and the highly significant developments in the foreign-exchange field in the countries of Western Europe, with which the Economic Cooperation Administration has been intimately concerned. Moreover, the policies of the Monetary Fund, an international institution, are by no means identical with those of the United States even though they have been largely supported by the American government. Most of the policies and activities of the Fund represent a compromise of the positions of its members. This is not simply a matter of voting strength, since few issues in the Fund are ever brought to a formal vote. The United States with over 30 per cent of the voting strength in the Fund could corral a majority of the votes on most issues, but it would be an empty victory in most cases. Except as a safeguard____________________