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A silver transformation: Chinese monetary integration in times of political disintegration, 1898–1933

Ma, Debin ORCID: 0000-0002-9604-8724 and Zhao, Liuyan (2020) A silver transformation: Chinese monetary integration in times of political disintegration, 1898–1933. Economic History Review, 73 (2). 513 - 539. ISSN 0013-0117

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Identification Number: 10.1111/ehr.12939


This article provides the first systematic econometric study on the evolution of Chinese silver exchange and monetary regimes during the period 1898–1933. Using high-quality datasets of monthly and daily prices of silver dollars, we apply the threshold autoregressive models to estimate the silver points between Shanghai and 18 other cities in northern and central China. We find a noticeable improvement in monetary integration between Shanghai and Tianjin from the 1910s, which then spread to other cities in our sample throughout the 1920s and 1930s. We supplement our analysis with new datasets on volumes and costs of silver flows and with an in-depth historical narrative. This article re-evaluates the efficiency of the silver regime and China's economic performance in the Republican era.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2020 Economic History Society
Divisions: Economic History
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HC Economic History and Conditions
D History General and Old World > DS Asia
JEL classification: N - Economic History > N1 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics; Growth and Fluctuations > N15 - Asia including Middle East
Date Deposited: 08 Apr 2020 15:57
Last Modified: 14 Feb 2022 00:00

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