75 years of Central Bank of Ireland: A Brief History

Nice speech by Patrick Honohan, former Governor of Central Bank of Ireland(Sep-2009-Sep 2015). The speech was given on the occasion of celebrating the 75th anniversary of the central bank (formed in Feb -1943). The 75th celebrations themselves were important as both 25th and 50th anniversaries as 25th was not celebrated and the 50th one just ran into controversy.

Honohan divides the history into three periods:

The 75-year history of the Central Bank of Ireland falls neatly into three contrasting quartercenturies. For the first quarter-century (1943-68) Irish banking continued to operate as a kind of satellite of the British system, with the Central Bank maintaining the non-interventionist approach that had characterised the currency board regime in place from 1927. The second quarter century (1968-93) was a period of monetary instability with double-digit inflation and repeated devaluations. 

Hyper-globalisation has defined the most recent 25 years (1993-2018) of the Central Bank’s operations, with the Irish economy experiencing a damaging episode of over financialisation followed by a collapse, from which the Bank sought to navigate a recovery that would minimise economic damage. Evaluating national economic performance in each of the three periods on price stability and average job growth, the most recent quarter century outperforms the other two; but it has been more volatile.

Always useful to figure histories of other countries’ central banks as it gives one perspective on both monetary and financial history. Then one can compare with other countries to draw richer insights..

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