Donald R. Zak

Donald R. Zak

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Donald R. Zak Work: Home: School of Natural Resources & Environment 201 W. Henry St. University of Michigan Saline, MI 48176 430 E. University Ave. (734) 429-0123 Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1115 (734) 763-4991 Email: Date of Birth: 16 July, 1958 Education: 1987 Ph.D., Michigan State University 1983 M.S., University of Idaho 1981 B.S. Cum Laude, Ohio State University Academic Appointments: 2009 to Present Burton V. Barnes Collegiate Professor of Ecology, School of Natural Resources & Environment, University of Michigan 2004 to Present Professor, Department of Ecology and Evolutionary
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  • g.p. zogg
  • a.j. burton
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61ST CONGRESS | SENATE I DOCUMENT
2d Session [ \ No. 507
NATIONAL MONETARY COMMISSION
Renewal of Reichsbank
Charter
Washington : Government Printing Office : 1910 NATIONAL MONETARY COMMISSION.
NELSON W. ALDRICH, Rhode Island, Chairman.
EDWARD B. VREELAND, New York, Vice-Chairman.
JESSE OVERSTREET, Indiana. JULIUS C. BURROWS, Michigan.
JOHN W. WEEKS, Massachusetts. EUGENE HALE, Maine.
ROBERT W. BONYNGE, Colorado. PHILANDER C. KNOX, Pennsylvania.
THEODORE E. BURTON, Ohio. SYLVESTER C. SMITH, California.
JOHN W. DANIEL, Virginia. LEMUEL P. PADGETT, Tennessee.
HENRY M. TELLER, Colorado. GEORGE F. BURGESS, Texas.
HERNANDO D. MONEY, Mississippi. ARSENE P. PUJO, Louisiana.
JOSEPH W. BAILEY, Texas. ARTHUR B. SHELTON, Secretary.
A. PIATT ANDREW, Special Assistant to Commission. TABLE OF CONTENTS.
Page.
I. Results of the German Bank Inquiry of 1908 (articles pub­
lished in the' ' Frankfurter Zeitung'' during December, 1908). 5
II. Draft of a bill for the amendment of the German bank act
with explanations 79
III. Excerpts from the proceedings of the Third German Bankers'
Convention, held in Hamburg in September, 1907—The
discussion of deposit banking (speeches by Dr. Jaffe\ Dr.
Damm£, Dr. Solomonsohn , Max Schinckel, and Geh. Mueller) _ 123
IV. Credit at the Reichsbank. By Dr. R. Koch, former president
of the Reichsbank 201
V. Concerning the collateral loan business of the Reichsbank,
especially the lending on imperial and state securities. By
Dr. R. Koch, former president of the Reichsbank 217
VI. Concerning the renewal of the Reichsbank privilege. By Prof.
W. Lexis 23
VII.g the renewal of the privilege of the Reichsbank
and of the private note banks. By Dr. Moriz Stroell, director
of the Bayerische Notenbank 243
VIII. Law of June 1, 1909, amending the Bank Act 261
3 I
Results of the German Bank Inquiry
of 1908
[Articles published in the Frankfurter Zeitung during: December, 1908]
5 RESULTS OF THE GERMAN BANK
INQUIRY OF 1908.
I. THE INQUIRY COMMISSION—WHAT CAUSED THE MONE­
TARY STRINGENCY—GERMANY'S FOREIGN TRADE—
THE NATIONAL WEALTH OF GERMANY—THE DEMAND
FOR CAPITAL AND CREDIT MONEY.
The bank act confers upon the State the right to revoke
the charter of the Reichsbank on January i, 1891, and
at intervals of ten years after that date upon one year's
notice. The charter, therefore, cannot be revoked before
January 1, 1911, notice having been given not later than y 1, 1910. Recommendations for the renewal
of the charter have to be submitted by the Imperial
Government to the Reichstag during the session 1908-9,
which has just opened. The Government appointed
last April a representative commission which was intrusted
with the examination of a large number of experts. The
inquiry commenced on May 1 and was conducted in such
an efficient manner that the hearing of the experts was
concluded during the same month. Since then, after
sifting the material and collecting additional data, the
commission on October 12 began to wind up its labors,
finishing on October 19. The results became known the
same day through an inspired press notice which appeared
with our comments in the second morning edition of the
Frankfurter Zeitung for October 20 and 21. Full informa-
tion may be expected by the public from the discussions
7 National Monetary Commission
of the proposed measure in the Reichstag, from the
amendments to the bank act which have now been drawn
up by the Imperial Government and from the explanation
of these amendments, and also from the minutes of the
inquiry commission, which will most likely accompany
the Government's proposals. The statements of the
expert witnesses, in accordance with a promise given
them, will not be published, nor is it at present intended
to prepare a summary of the deliberations of the commis­
sion. The publication of the minutes just as they stand
will, it is true, make it more difficult for one to inform
oneself of the main points by a rapid glance; at the same
time, it will enable the careful reader to get at the com­
plete arguments pro and con, and weigh them against
each other, instead of depending solely on a count of votes.
How far the Imperial Government will embody in its
draft of the proposed measures the results of the inquiry,
and how far the Reichstag will approve or alter this draft,
are questions for the future. It will be remembered that,
although more time and work had been devoted to the
problems of the bourse inquiry fifteen years ago—the
commission then appointed rendered a very full report
containing well-considered proposals—yet the Govern­
ment materially changed the proposals of the commis­
sion and the Reichstag in its turn "improved for the
worse'' the plans presented by the Government. This
time the problems are much simpler and clearer, at least as
far as the work of the commission goes. Nevertheless the
members of the commission were asked to remain silent for
a while; but the problems put before them have lately
8 Renewal of Reichsbank Charter
been discussed so thoroughly and generally that beyond
the meagre information given out for publication one may
easily acquire a definite and interesting knowledge of the
whole question.
The valuable and very comprehensive statistics com­
piled by the Reichsbank for the purposes of the inquiry
have also helped to enlighten a wider circle of the public.
We are therefore of the opinion that we shall broaden and
deepen the general interest in these important questions
if now, upon the conclusion of the inquiry, we follow up
our comments on the questions put to the inquiry com­
mission (cfr. Frankfurter Zeitung, April 26 to May 12,
1908) with our observations on the work of the commis­
sion and on the subject-matter of the inquiry.
It is generally recognized that the deliberations of the
commission under the chairmanship of the president of
the Reichsbank, Mr. Havenstein, were conducted on all
sides very impartially, even when opinions were widely
divergent; consequently, such refining of views and
such an elucidation of the pros and cons of the questions
have been reached by the opposing groups that very
beneficial results may be expected therefrom by all con­
cerned, more particularly by the Imperial Government and
the Reichstag. In so far as a change of views took place,
it must be ascribed to the slackening of the demand for
credit facilities and to the fall in interest rates which has
meanwhile occurred. Had this taken place a year ago an
inquiry would perhaps not have been instituted at all.
At least up to the year 1907 it seemed that the inquiry into
banking matters which had been promised was to consist
9 National Monetary Commission
merely of the examination of a few expert witnesses—•
especially of some men who had already advocated certain
changes. But when, during the year 1907, in spite of a
gradual lessening of the industrial activity, the monetary
stringency increased, and at last our bank rate reached
its record figure of 7Xper cent, the public as well as the
Reichstag became fairly alarmed.
This apprehension has since considerably subsided, owing
to easier money markets and the enlightening influence of
the bank inquiry. The popular view has more and more
come in line with that so long expressed by the Frankfurter
Zeitung that the strain on the money market and rise of
interest rates have not been caused through any inade­
quacy of the Reichsbank, nor through mistakes of its man­
agement nor through lack of currency, but principally
through a steadily increasing disproportion between the
supply and demand of capital. Moreover, we have long
ago shown that the stringency and its effect were not con­
fined to ourselves alone, but were international, although
it must be admitted that Germany was especially hard hit.
With us the transition to a commercial and industrial na­
tion has made and is making rapid strides; in particular
the large industries have made signal progress. The result
is that wealth, capital, and credit have quickly grown, but
more money has also been locked up in new plants and in­
vestments; the standard of living, wages, and prices have
also risen, and the demand for capital has created a corre­
spondingly high demand for circulating media. Yet our eco­
nomic policy, as we have shown on former occasions, does
not favor the formation of new capital, but rather retards it
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