Front Page Titles (by Subject) Efficiency of the Currency. - Money and the Mechanism of Exchange
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Efficiency of the Currency. - William Stanley Jevons, Money and the Mechanism of Exchange 
Money and the Mechanism of Exchange (New York: D. Appleton and Co. 1876).
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Efficiency of the Currency.
By the efficiency of the currency we mean the average number of exchanges effected by each piece of money in a unit of time, such as a year. The aggregate work done by money will be measured by its quantity multiplied into the average number of times which each coin or note passes from hand to hand during the year. Now we know very imperfectly what is the quantity of currency in most countries, and we know nothing at all as to the average rapidity of circulation. Some coins, especially small silver or bronze coins, may pass several times in the course of a day. Other coins or notes may be kept in the pocket for weeks, or may be laid by for months and years. I have never met with any attempt to determine in any country the average rapidity of circulation, nor have I been able to think of any means whatever of approaching the investigation of the question, except in the inverse way. If we knew the amount of exchanges effected, and the quantity of currency used, we might get by division the average number of times the currency is turned over; but the data, as already stated, are quite wanting.
There is no doubt that the rapidity of circulation varies very much between one country and another. A thrifty people with slight banking facilities, like the French, Swiss, Belgians, and Dutch, hoard coin much more than an improvident people like the English, or even a careful people with a perfect banking system like the Scotch. Many circumstances, too, affect the rapidity of circulation. Railways and rapid steamboats enable coin and bullion to be more swiftly remitted than of old; telegraphs prevent its needless removal, and the acceleration of the mails has a like effect. A decrease in the circulation of country banknotes in England, in 1842, was attributed to the effect of the penny postal reform in facilitating presentation of notes by post.