Thomas Tooke

1803-1848 Gold and Silver increase in Supply. Was Gold or Silver more stable?

In Bullion and Mining on April 22, 2012 at 10:27 pm

Here we have more data about the increase in Gold and Silver during the period from 1803 to 1848 from William Newmarch using the data from John Towne Danson.

As the author writes at the time: ” The leading points of the comparison are: – that while the annual supplies of silver had only increased only 10 per cent.; the annual supplies of gold had increased by more than 200 per cent. It may be admitted that, during the interval, some changes had taken place in the value of gold as compared to silver; but the constancy of the relative value of gold and commodities justifies us in concluding, that an increase in the annual supply of that metal, from 3 1/4 millions sterling in 1800 to 10 millions sterling in 1848; had not been greeter than was required by the wants of the expanding commerce, and growing population of the world.

One of our bloggers of those days (1833) , Lord Overstone wrote:

” It may be true, though there is no evidence of the fact, that gold fluctuates more in value than silver; but there does not appear to be any difficulty in maintaining it as our standard, subject at times to some temporary inconvenience in relation to the currencies of other countries provided the issue of paper-money be duly regulated. ”

Evidently it seems to imply that there is nothing superior in using Gold as a standard versus Silver in Asia as it was the case in the XIX century.





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